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Gently Awakened: The Influence of Faith on Your Artistic Journey

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Do you dare risk unreservedly combining your Christian faith with your creativity? Could you be assured of thriving in the arts, or does that sound outrageously improbable?
Creativity is like an unwrapped gift from God. Its contents are mysterious, begging for action. The benevolent Giver eagerly awaits a response. Yet it is often tossed aside after merely removing the outer wrapping.
Too many Christians abandon their creativity, as if they were the hapless recipients of a toy with incomprehensible instructions. They walk away from their destiny— perhaps their very reason for being gifted in such a time as this. They remain oblivious of their God-authored potential, empowered by faith, to uniquely express the many nuances of their journey with Jesus.
Sara Joseph, an artist in paint, clay and verse, testifies to God’s infinite interest in every aspect of her creative enterprise. What she discovered may surprise you. In Gently Awakened, she employs prose, verse, and art to attest to God's faithfulness to the artist. Far from empty theories, these lessons, forged in the paint-splattered laboratory of her own life, bring clarity to the practical considerations of living out the unique call of a creative Christian.
Such a story could be yours to live, in partnership with your Creator.

255 pages, Paperback

First published July 11, 2013

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Sara Joseph

3 books26 followers

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 47 reviews
Profile Image for Natalie Vellacott.
Author 18 books858 followers
January 23, 2018
I recieved this as a review exchange and it was good to read something different. I believe this is a unique book combining art, poetry and the Christian faith. The author's passion for all three really shine through the book and the struggle she has within herself regarding balancing her responsibilities as a mother and her passion for art that she believes God has called her to are clearly explained. I'm glad the author did try to find a healthy balance and that really made all the difference for me when reading this book. It's clear that she loves her family dearly and many of the chapters include detail of days out and other events with them.

The creative writing is really of an exceptional standard particularly in the first half of the book where I was captivated by some of the scenes documented. The poetry and art are also beautiful and this the observation of an extremely uncreative person!

I found the author's views on tithing and prosperity to be in conflict with my own. I believe giving should be in secret and not limited to 10% and that the verses in Malachi speaking of the store houses of heaven being opened don't always refer to financial blessing or prosperity. The author seems to be advancing the view that those who do not have enough financially are somehow out of God's favour. I find this view a little harsh especially as a missionary living and working amongst the poorest of the poor, many that are rich in faith....However, I believe the author's beliefs are her genuine interpretation of the Bible and what she has found through her personal experiences so I haven't made much of this in my rating.

Overall a book well worth reading especially if you are of the creative persuasion which I am not.
Profile Image for Mary Kenyon.
Author 15 books115 followers
January 14, 2018
Wow. I only read a few sentences from this book before I bought a copy for my artist daughter for Christmas. This was the perfect book to read as I delve into the connection between creativity and spirituality for my work in progress. Beautiful prose and insight for the creative soul.
Profile Image for Linda Caddick.
Author 5 books27 followers
August 29, 2013

Do you find yourself floundering in insignificance – you know you have creative gifts but have no idea how to use them and perhaps they seem of no value in the scheme of things. Sara pioneers the path to discovering how the diligent development of your unique talents for God’s glory alone will draw you into deep and joyful fellowship with Him who invested His creativity in you. It is a timely directive in my own tentative journey as a writer.

Sara’s passion for technical excellence in her art is evident in her writing. This beautifully crafted book, illustrated in more ways than one with her own works, is an encouragement to recognize art in all its many forms as a divine calling. Each sentence is a masterpiece of expertly selected words reflecting a lightness of spirit which is uplifting, illuminating and ‘gently awakening'.

Sara, together with her love, devotion, gratitude, humility and bold faith, sets a wonderful example of how using artistic expression can inspire others to reach higher.

This is a book to read slowly and thoughtfully, and to return to again.
1 review
November 20, 2013
I don't think there is another book like this. If you are familiar with Oswald Chambers, Corrie Ten-Boom or Catherine Marshall then you have some idea what awaits you in this book. The author is honest about her life and faith and eager for others to be encouraged and challenged by her testimony. For Sara Joseph following Jesus and creating art are closely intertwined and lessons learnt in her christian walk are carefully applied in her artistic journey. This is the single most encouraging book about being an artist I have ever read. No book on art history or technique has helped as much. Of course, if you read this book your life might change as you learn to value God over money, fame and talent. This book will challenge you to dig deeper into scripture and turn your fears into faith in God.
Profile Image for LAWonder10.
951 reviews739 followers
October 12, 2013
Gently Awakened is highly recommended reading for any artist or literary person. I also would recommend it for the "lay" person as well. It is a very uplifting, motivational book. The author is not only talented in her writing ability, but in art, poetry, knowledge and wisdom, too.

I thought I was quite well-versed in the bible. Some thoughts and quotes she brought out put a "new light" on scriptural references I have read many times.
In addition to scripture references, Sarah uses her own personal experiences, and a few experiences of others. They all work together in creating this "work of art".

The poetry added throughout the book is beautifully written, as well as inspirational, as is the artwork.

The cover lightly touches on her art ability. The title is also a good reflection of what is inside these pages.

However, there were a few typo and at times the text was repetitive - but repetition is how we are taught. This still is a book not only to read but to keep as a valuable reference and teaching aid.
I give this book a review with a strong four stars rating.

I was generously sent this book for an honest review, of which I have given.
8 reviews5 followers
September 1, 2020

Sara Joseph discusses apprenticeship in her memoir Gently Awakened, about how her career as a visual artist is infused with and an outgrowth of her Christian faith.
Historically, the apprentice to a great artist wouldn’t always have lessons in the craft, but would instead assist with chores around the studio while watching the artist at work. This would give the apprentice a chance to pick up attitudes and methods that couldn’t be easily explained in a lecture or demonstration.
Sara views her faith journey in a similar way, participating with God and joining the work He’s already doing. This means that rather than worrying about how her whole artistic life will take shape, or completely filling her schedule, or taking it on herself to preach through her art, she steadily develops her technique while following inner promptings.
Advice from non-religious business coaches for creative professionals are now saying similar things: don’t commit 100 percent of your time and other resources so that you can follow your intuition and be open to opportunities as they arise.
And the most meaningful opportunities that Sara finds, the most memorable and nuanced parts of Gently Awakened, are the small and humble stories of how her artwork encourages people. In one case, a portrait she reluctantly paints of a plain-looking woman becomes a chance to uncover her subject’s deeper beauty. Another time she echoes an inspiring vision a struggling widow experienced, helping her find the strength to continue. These are things that happen along the way, God-orchestrated connections for Sara, rather than big moments of drama or career success.
She also learns to let go of avenues for her work just as gracefully as she accepts them, such as a personal studio in an artists’ collective, which she excitedly rents, then gives up when her oldest child moves away to college and vacates his room. This gentle grace and dignity is a hallmark of her book, and of the artwork interspersed between each chapters, mostly watercolors of people and natural still life.
Sara touches on themes familiar to the lives of many artists: figuring out whether one should really be an artist, learning the craft, locating time to create and cash for supplies, finding inspiration, handling disappointments, and developing a personal, unique style. She handles that last point in a different way: seeking and following personal faith-based guidance on how to proceed with each work and letting her style form naturally, rather than specifically setting out to be original.
Overall, Sara Joseph’s Gently Awakened presents an artist committed to living out her beliefs and who humbly seeks to serve others and a higher purpose with her work.
1 review1 follower
December 4, 2014
Full disclosure - I am married to the author and this would be a good time to skip this review if you are looking for an unbiased opinion of this work. I feel compelled however to lend some background context to this book here.

Jesus states in John 10:10[NRSV] "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly." All Christians have eternal life, but most Christians fail to possess the abundant life. They are on the right side of Calvary but on the wrong side of Pentecost, on the right side of forgiveness but mired in their powerlessness to apprehend the promised abundant life. Sara helps bridge this divide in her book.

In a similar vein the bulk of the New Testament is dedicated to the progressive maturation or 'completion' of the Christian after the new birth. Sara's book documents the journey that she took along this path. It has been a path of progressive enlightenment seen through the prism of an artist in her personal struggle to apprehend and fan into flame her God-endowed creative gift (Ephesians 2:10, Exodus 35:31-32, 2Timothy 1:6). In the process she has managed to illuminate this path for us by skillfully weaving a rich narrative textured with personal anecdotes.

Personally this book is more of a devotional than a narrative meant to be read in linear order. Each chapter stands quite independently on its own. While it may sever the biographical thread running through it, it is not central to the work. I read it with a bookmark and highlighter by my side. I liken it to a fine wine best savored a few sips at a time than to a progressive five course meal.

Like me, I know that you will be edified in your reading of this book and confident that you will find yourself frequently returning to its pages in an attempt to re-acquire the 'apprehension' of this abundant life in Christ. Sara once remarked that this work came to be "in spite of her family, not because of it", and likened my role in particular to the grain of sand to an oyster, with a pearl as the result. Judging by the end result I resolve to continue to play my part (my calling?) in "irritating" more literary gems out of this author in the future. Eternity will be the richer for it.
8 reviews
May 29, 2017
The title of this book excited me. I am a frequent reader of Christian authors- I am a particular fan of Tim Keller- and love seeing how various authors can articulate the beauty and mystery of what it means to be a Christian. And I certainly feel that the exploration of where faith and art intersect is ripe with possibilities.

But I was somewhat ambivalent about Sara Joseph's book. It is a combination of styles: part narrative, part theology, part poetry, and a color section of her artwork. I really enjoyed her artwork-- and am glad to know that people are responding to it worldwide. But I felt mostly unaffected by the rest of her book.

The parts of the book that I DID respond to the most were in some ways the least "poetic," but rather frank and personal. I find it interesting that an episode she was hesitant to include was one of my favorite parts of the book. She described how someone she'd never met saw her painting and recognized it as an image she had received in a vision while going through some major healing. It was a moving example of how God works through us when we trust and take action, even when we don't know what will happen from doing so. The incident was revealing of the character of God through the lens of Sara Joseph's unique and personal experience.

I wish the book had more concrete examples like that... she speaks generally about difficult times, rejections, navigating artistic endeavor amidst family life, and provision, but there's very little offered in the way of specific, relatable experience. Instead she tends to go into superlatives and long florid sentences, which caused me to disconnect rather than get pulled in. Don't get me wrong- I think God is worthy of all superlatives, but I also find that encounters with God come in the midst of very human, familiar, unremarkable moments. I wanted to hear more about those.

1 review
June 16, 2018
Gently AwakenedGently Awakened: The Influence of Faith on Your Artistic Journey will rouse the sleeper and raise the blinds. It will spur you towards a higher calling as a Christian artist. Sara writes "Creativity without God may seem adequate but will come woefully short of what God intends for us." Her personal account is of just such a pursuit. You will be encouraged to strive for His best, not only as relates to art, but to life in general. Sara's engaging autobiographical style allows the reader a glimpse into her creative domain; one all Christian artists can identify with. Gently Awakened is truthfully written, Biblically sound, and is sure to urge you onward along the path least trod.
Profile Image for Jennie.
154 reviews6 followers
January 4, 2023
Such a beautiful contemplation of life as a Christian artist. I really enjoyed reading a chapter every day before I wrote. I found the chapter on tithing to be a little excessive, but overall a good read.
1 review
December 20, 2013
Sara and I have been close friends for many years. In all that time, her gift as an artist has only struck me with wonderment. Each time I saw a new work of art, I have been silenced by her ability to capture a precious moment, an inner thought; she was watching when you weren’t and holding the moment for eternity.

Sara savors every moment of creating her work, “taking more time in the planning than the execution”, as she put it.

Her early watercolors were not of the heavy oils with the great capacity for particulars, nor even a photograph; but captured a large idea with a light touch and simplicity of structure that is almost ephemeral – and immensely truthful. She took on ideas that were very different from usual themes that I found and got bored with. Even her still life had a different style. I always looked forward to seeing her points of view.

Sara’s watercolor impression of my mother-in-law (who she had met only in pictures) captured so precisely the moment of intense concentration on her daily newspaper that our hearts were deeply touched.

Her later works are no less large ideas. The motif today is her purpose – a celebration of her faith -articulated by a flood of strong colors, strong contrasts and sharper lines.

To me, each and every one of Sara’s works reveals her precious gift.

Her new work – a book bursting with joy, discovery and immense detail – is no less a pleasure. It marries her idealism and her practicality into a narrative that expresses every individual’s search for meaning in life. With profound emotion and great thought, it discloses the secret fear and caution over each decision, the intense search that each of us embarks upon. It highlights to all of us that to experience life is to experience its many aspects, to learn and to develop our own capacity to hone our purpose – and to never give up.

Here, words are Sara’s paintbrush. They evoke well-crafted images of daily routine, self-encounter and faith. With her usual simplicity, she describes the terrifying journey of questioning herself to vanquishing the fear that takes over, in the end to be overcome by her faith.

I love the power of words. Sara’s ‘hungry mosquitoes’ creates an unforgettable image. Little words from today’s business practices creep in and tell the story of her efforts to season her skill, to dream dreams of success in a world of commerce.

Her poems are tidy – little nuggets of strong emotion and explosions of illumination.

I have always been amazed by the depth to which Sara explores a concept and relishes it. And this book is a testament of just that: it has brought together her ability, her single-mindedness, delight in following the path to which she is compelled and in exploring her purpose.

Peace is a reward for a few who are clear about their mission. Sara’s book is a witness to a peace beyond words, an exceptional talent and a celebration.
1 review
November 11, 2014
As my life has been a stand still and downhill since my diagnosis of Fibromyalgia among other health issues developed from it. Since my health issues, if things couldn't get worse, I've been dealt with extreme family issues that affected my health even further more to extreme fatigue and depression. I will never forget 2013 holidays as sad as it has ever been it was the turning point for a new beginning 2014. As a new year began, a new commitment began to God, no more stagnant, I prayed Lord help me refocus not on my ailments Lord give me the Supernatural Strength to use me, use my skills, to witness and testify of your Love, something that as you are healing me, taking care of my husband, and 4 boys, I still have strength and time to do your work first. Thats when He put visions to sketch as my pastor gave his Sunday Sermon and He continue to tug on my heart and Holy Spirit that this is my calling to use what existing artistic skills that while God is healing my health and emotions God will use my existing artistic skills and talent to witness and testify to others of His Love through Art! I've been searching, researching, and praying for God to direct me to other Christian Artists. I was blessed to have found Sara Joseph and her beautifully written book to confirm and help my journey as a Christian Artist. I would highly recommend the reading and rereading of Gently Awakened: The Influence of Faith on Your Artistic Journey. Thank you Sara, for sharing your testimony as you started you journey, as we, Christian Artists, all have doubts and questions and fears if Art can be used for the Glory of God. Sara not only takes you through her journeys, but confirms them with bible verses, and her own heart felt poetry. I will surely buy your book to share as gifts to other artists. I have read in artist forums the same questions you and many have asked and answered and you have confirmed and rejuvenated my calling I will share to other Christians Artists that they are not alone. Once you read Sara 's Journey you will not be the same and have a new look to what your Artistic calling may be for the Glory of God!
Profile Image for Gregory Booker.
Author 2 books5 followers
August 26, 2014
Sara Joseph’s book “gently awakened....The Influence of Faith on Your Artistic Journey” is a work of art in literary form. The author’s writes with an earnest desire to share her life story as an aspiring artist. She leaves no stone unturned as she exposes her vulnerabilities as a person. Ultimately trusting in full reliance in her faith in God in order to succeed. In the book, interwoven through out her life experiences are her poems of excellent rhyme, beautiful artwork in black & white and in color with poignant bible verses highlighted along the way. All supported with an effort to share something of herself in order to benefit others who live to work in the arena of Fine Arts.

A standout poem for me was the author’s poem titled “An Affair of the Heart” an excerpt reads “Far from proud and pompous priests......I found You there among the least...You graced with power this humble throng.....Voices lifted in earnest, grateful song”. The poem continues on full of uniquely being Sara’s own voice.

The author meticulously, refrains from sounding preachy. Yet Sara, minister’s on many facets of an artist challenges including family life in a way that touches all our lives, artist or not. The book has originality and purpose clearly in the forefront that is unique to Sara’s own mission. She does take you on her journey with the sincere desire of wanting others to finish their journey.

The writer is a professional artist featuring polymer clay, paintings and other forms of art and that is clearly her talent but perhaps, without realizing it, she has quite another talent not spoken much of in her book. She is a writer who can paint with words as well. This is a recommended reading to anyone looking to be encouraged and instructed in their faith and their talent. I enjoyed the book and know I will go back to it periodically for the guidance it gives as a writer and pianist myself who places his faith in God.
April 2, 2014
I was given Sara's book by an aunt of mine who knew my interest in art. The soft title led me to believe this would be a gentle read but I found as I read through the journey God has taken Sara on, instead I was heartily, shaken awake! Recognizing I had been given so much profound wisdom in the area of creativity lately, yet I had not done one thing to record a single piece of it!

Then in a matter of 3 days God threw Habakkuk 2:2 in my face so many times I stopped counting. I had a responsibility, and I was not listening. Sara's book has brought me from a sleeping state to a state of fully awake and not just fully awake but struggling to keep up with a God who is pouring out creative revelation in the area of art because He is longing for His Children to awaken in such a way that His children are the one paving new pathways for the way art is made.

As I listened to hear what God would say to me about art and looked to see what He was doing in heaven, I started to release it in our church services. The fear of people not liking my art disappeared because I knew the Master had inspired me and He alone is who I was working with to create as He once created in the Beginning! I walked through many of the situations Sara has with the template she had laid out before was able to move through my seasons quicker and easily.

Although I have yet to be as successful as Sara, I've positioned my life and heart in such a way that there is no limit to where God can take me now. I've been so touched by Sara's book and the journey she has taken. Because of her obedience to write her words down, she is releasing others to do likewise and together I have no doubt we will change the way the world looks at art.
1 review
January 8, 2015
The author of the book'gently awakened' reveals the dynamic and supernatural power within the reach of every artist, not only an artist but every person of creative talent, if one combines talents with faith and trust in the Giver of all the talents Who is the Great King of universe , the eternal, invisible, immortal God.
From generation to generation the world has definitely witnessed many superior creations of more outstanding artists.
But Sara's creation stands almost unique as they supernaturally touch the lives of many as revealed by her testomnies and experiences as recorded in her book.
This uniquness in all her creations including her book birthed out of her deep knowledge of her Creator God and her deep rooted relationship with Him.
As she effortlessly brings out all her struggles, hopes and frustrations, failures and the strength that she received from her heavenly Father to move forward after every failure and disappointment and the birth pang that she experienced in her soul before the successful delivery of all her creations, 'gently awakened' can be of a great blessing to all the people of all the walks.
I believe her book has a supernatural power to serve as a guideline to those who stand at a dead end of their career or profession or creative engagement of any kind and whose soul is immersed in frustration and hence in anguish.
The language is beautiful, though might be felt too hard by a sector of people, has a supernatural ability to core through the hearts of the reader and to touch lives as her painting and sculptures. The faint sense of humour that is all over her book makes the reading lighter.
The world is flooded with books and artistic creations.
But Sara, your pieces will stand high- higher in the coming season.
Profile Image for Jody Thomae.
Author 11 books2 followers
June 29, 2015
I first found Sara through her Christian Artist Resource site (http://www.christian-artist-resource....). While visiting her site I came across her book, Gently Awakened, and promptly ordered it. I suggest you do the same! This is a wonderful book for both Christian artists and creatives, as well as those just exploring a Christ-centered faith, as you will learn a great deal about your spiritual side and how it affects your creative process and artistic journey.
Sara shares her poetry, her artwork, and her journey of faith in this deep read! She tells a beautiful story of how she came into faith and how her faith journey has led her into a steady reliance on the Holy Spirit's guidance and direction for her art and life. Her stories are personal--not merely scratching the surface, but digging deeply into how her spirit communes with God's Spirit and how that communion has led her to places she only dreamed about.
I was deeply touched at many points as she shared her journey, and her journey challenged me in my own journey. She challenged me to be even more reliant on the Spirit's guidance; to lay down matters that are unimportant to God; and to seek His kingdom first in all things. There were times it felt as if Sara sat right there with me sharing her story over a cup of coffee, like an old friend who had earned the right to speak into my areas of weaknesses, my insecurities, and my own lack of faith at God's provision in my life.
Are you creative, an artist, a seeker? This one is a must-read!
Jody Thomae
Author, God's Creative Gift--Unleashing the Artist in You
Profile Image for Sara Joseph.
Author 3 books26 followers
February 2, 2016

This is not intended to be a review, just some pertinent background information about the book.

Gently Awakened was written in response to what I've come to recognize as the unmistakable nudge of the Lord. I never tire of hearing testimonies of what Jesus accomplishes in lives yielded to Him. I collect such stories, diverse in their character, setting and plots, yet triumphantly consistent in their notes of victory. I never cease to marvel at their power to touch my life even when their authors have long since stepped over into eternity.

That my story should be so written was at His bidding. I had grown accustomed to what I considered its ordinariness, even while delighting in the Lord's faithfulness in all the twists and turns of my own story. I kept hearing concerns voiced by many artists who were also Christians. They wrote to me privately through the Christian Artist Resource website sharing heartfelt accounts of tests and trials. I couldn't help but think, "I understand that. I've experienced it and know that Jesus can more than handle that." Contemporary artists and creative people need to know that Jesus is every bit as marvelously sufficient for today's creative challenges as He was for all that Paul, Luke or John encountered.

Gently Awakened is part memoir with some poetry and a few examples of my art in full color. More of my art can be viewed online at Christian Artist Resource

Profile Image for Margaret.
1,002 reviews6 followers
February 4, 2015
I was gifted this book by my niece with an unusual facebook post where she offered the first 6 people who liked her post and were given the opportunity to choose anything they wanted for under $10 from Amazon. I just happen to see her post and thought how unusual and how wonderful to randomly gift any one of her friends with a simple gift. I happen to run across this book as being on my wish list and on a lark, gave her the link and I was gifted this book within minutes on my Kindle. I think it was a divine appointment because the author seemed to be speaking directly to me.

At times it seem as though this book was written specifically for me and I related so much to the struggles of the Christian artist. The need for meaning and focus and the constant fight against futility is my day in and day out struggle as an artist. Being a perfectionist and often doubting myself, this book inspired every part of my spirit. I recommend it to anyone who is a Christian who often wonders where their art fits in their spiritual walk and life. I especially appreciated the mention of the importance of keeping a journal of that struggle. This book is a fresh breath of inspiration!

1 review
July 2, 2013
In Sara Joseph’s new book, Gently Awakened: The Influence of Faith on Your Artistic Journey, Sara proves she is as creative in her writing as she is with paint and sculpting clay. Like her artwork, her writing and poetry are descriptive and three dimensional.

At the center of Sara’s life is Jesus Christ. Gently Awakened: The Influence of Faith on Your Artistic Journey, is Sara’s story of how God directs her life steps using the artistic gifts and abilities He gives her.

The power of books is that they draw you into their story line where you can find personal application. As I journeyed with Sara across the pages of her book, I came upon several statements that applied to my life and which made for thought-provoking pauses. This was a book and a journey that I did not want to end.

This book is an inspirational read. You will enjoy getting to know Sara Joseph. Join her on her artistic journey. As He did with Sara, God is waiting for you to meet Him and, in faith, offer your creative gifts for His Eternal Kingdom.
May 22, 2014
Gently Awakened by Sara Joseph is an inspirational book with fascinating personal accounts of an artist's journey in the pursuit to give artistic expression to her Christian faith. Each chapter is filled with personal stories, poems and artwork that tell of the challenges along the way and the hand of God in meeting every nee. Her example of faithfulness touched me in the deep places of rejections and disappointment in my own artistic journey. Sara challenges us to persevere as we travel the path God designed for us. I laughed and cried as I read of her obedience and God's faithfulness.
Every artist will be encouraged by this book. For the unbeliever, Sara gently offers the plan of salvation each step of the way with sound biblical examples of God's calling. The Christian reader will find Sara's story an exciting example of God's faithfulness and possibly be inspired as I was, to make a written record of all the ways God has worked to fulfill the heart's desire that He placed within each of us.
Cherie Giddens / artist/gallery owner

Profile Image for Amy.
593 reviews21 followers
October 30, 2014
"Maybe you sense that the moments that sing truest in your life are those spent expressing yourself in art. If you were to step up boldly to live it out, do you worry that you would starve?"

Sara's book encourages boldness in living out the creativity God has instilled in you. She, herself is blessed with talent not only in art, but also in writing and is using it as a means to express her faith. Her book is an encouragement to artists who are seeking to balance their desire to use, develop, and pursue their artistic talents as well as juggle life.

Sara shares her story - Born in India, lover of art and painting, immigrant to America, wife, mother, business entrepreneur, child of God, yet, ...

You can read my full review on my blog http://myseasonsofopportunities.blogs...

I was so blessed to receive this book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion.
I was not asked to give a positive review.
1 review1 follower
July 10, 2013
Sara is my neighbor and I have admired her commitment to Jesus Christ and her love for Him and His Word. As I began to read Gently Awakened, I was amazed at her writing skills. She writes about her personal experience with her savior and His molding of her personality and the development of her gift. I believe this verse describes Sara. Psalms 45:1 My heart overflows with a goodly theme; I address my psalm to a King. My tongue is like the pen of a ready writer.” Sara’s heart overflows as she writes about the development of her gift of art and His hand upon her growing relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.

After viewing some of Sara’s works of art, I recognize inspiration from a heavenly source. The Holy Spirit has given her the ability to communicate some spiritual experiences and spiritual truth in her art and her writing.
1 review
April 18, 2014
I just finished Sara's book this morning and know I will be visiting it again! I had been aware of Sara's moving artwork but had no knowledge of her book until an artist friend recommended it. I have been on my own artistic journey and have a penchant for reading inspirational books for the creatively inclined--Sara's book is personal and different from those other books. Her book is very much like having discussions with a dear artist friend about how God is working in our lives and through our art, our joys and fears and how we can grow as artists (people). Her poetry and artwork only enhance the experience!

I already have in mind several friends for whom this book would be an excellent gift and highly recommend it! It is filled with the wisdom and grace that God has shown Sara and that she shares with us.
Profile Image for Rex Woodmore.
1 review
April 24, 2015

Sara Joseph’s considerable God given artistic talent overflows from her beautiful visual art and into the written word. In her book ‘Gently Awakened’ Sara ‘paints’ word pictures in which she gives glory to the Lord for being by her side and in her heart, every step of her Spiritual and artistic journey. A journey that flows into the life she now enjoys as a successful Christian artist.
If any should doubt that God would bless a humble artist as mightily as Sara claims, then from my experience on my own journey as a Christian artist, I assure you that He can and He does.
This book should encourage all artists to think about the source of their artistic ability and remind them that beauty in all its forms comes from the God of the bible – The Creator of the Universe.
Rex Woodmore- Christian,Visual Artist,Administrator of http://artists4creation.weebly.com

June 30, 2013
As Sara's father, gently awakened recalled for me, the many cherished memories of a lifetime. Early events in her life helped to create in Sara an abiding faith in the enveloping love of Jesus Christ. That faith freed her from nagging fears and crippling anxieties. It helped her to manage an active family life and a truly creative career. gently awakened sensitively explains the answers she received for her doubts and fears. It fully embodies the spirit of the powerful motivation, which her faith granted her, in her creative work. I feel proud that her published words, poems and works of art will help to encourage similarly dedicated artists to combine an active faith with their creativity.
September 20, 2015
I found this book and at a popular Dallas art gallery where some of Sara's art pieces are also displayed. The book tells the story of Sara's artistic and spiritual journeys and how the two have converged in her life. Each chapter reads as a journaled story, which I loved. Sara's writing style is beautiful, poetic and thought provoking. Throughout the book are her art works and poetry, both of which I really enjoyed. This book really helped me understand how I can use my art to bring glory to God. I found Sara's story very inspiring and I purchased another book to give to one of my artist friends. Both of us loved the book and are now following Sara's blog to gain more of her thoughtful wisdom.
1 review
July 14, 2013
Sara Joseph took me on a spiritual journey through her honest and transparent life experiences. The biblical scriptures were carefully chosen to reinforce her poetry and aim for its readers. She gave her readers great encouragement to press on toward their goal using their Maker's guidance, power and truths. Her artwork was a brilliant depiction of her God-given talent. Her passion for her work and her faith were described beautifully in her poetry. Her vibrant colors in her artwork opened her readers' vision to see beyond the ordinary. Her book was a treasure for me and for others who choose to read it as well.
1 review
April 14, 2014
I would recommend Gently Awakened: The Influence of Faith on Your Artistic Journey, to anyone, Christian or non Christian. Sara Joseph opens the door to the Christian faith wide for the world to see her heart and her love for Christ. Anyone who may have had thoughts about knowing more about Christianity, or artists who want to dig deeper into their art and the reasons they feel so much passion to create..this book is a must read with pencil in hand. Sara has written a book on art that the art world has long needed.. This a a book to read and reread.
July 11, 2014
Sara's love for life, for people and for God come through in her beautifully written book. She draws us into her story, into her life by painting images with her words. There is a place she draws from that is anchored and secure. From there she combines her colorful story with her convictions about creativity and faith. I found her writing to be refreshing, and her message challenges me to stretch out to new places in my own creative journey. As she progresses into revelation she brings a depth of wisdom that draws me to go back and read it again.
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4 reviews1 follower
September 11, 2015
It is so easy to make money our pursuit. But God made us for himself and our gifts are part of that. Sara reminded me that my gifts have been given to me for God's glory and that I need to trust him to care for all my needs. He will provide. My job is to listen for him and allow him to lead me as I do my art. The pressure is off then! So glad to have read this book. It came at a time when I was stressing myself out over my art and creating a business. Now I am leaving that in God's hands and his timing. He has is handled. Now I can go and be a blessing through the gifts he has given me.
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