Thursday, May 17, 2012

SMASHing Sermons

 SMASH: "for the moments and musings that stick"

At the end of "Making Crosses", my project for Lent, I stated that I wanted to find another project that would allow me to focus on God and use creativity on a regular basis. I found it!!

Every Sunday I take notes on our pastor's sermons in a small notebook for that purpose. I don't like the notebook because the spacing of the lines is weird and sometimes I use all the lines and pages (2 per sermon) and sometimes I don't. All that blank space bugs me. The notebook itself is very bland and not very exciting. Most people probably don't care if their notebook is exciting but as a lover of pens, paper, school supplies and The Container Store I want my notebook to be pretty!

Recently I went to Michael's Craft store to purchase some supplies for the third grade Sunday School class and I saw some wonderful notebooks called SMASH books. The idea for these is that you use them for projects. They have a pen with a marker on one end and a glue stick on the other attached to the notebook. That way the glue is always handy and you can easily glue things into your notebook as you find them. Examples of things people use these for: wedding planning, decorating or remodeling, a place to collect ideas for projects, a place to save favorite quotes and sayings and as a planner. Art journaling is very popular right now and this is a modified version of that. 

What I think is really cool about things like this is that I love to take something designed for a "normal" or secular purpose and use it for something spiritual. I bought a SMASH book! I am using it to paste in my sermon notes. I am then taking time during the week following the sermon to go back over the notes, look up the scriptures mentioned in the sermon and then create something decorative around the sermon notes and the scriptures. The SMASH purpose is to record "the moments and musing that stick". I want God's Word to "stick" to me!

I did the first sermon this week. Our pastor presents interesting and challenging sermons, ones that make you want to change something about yourself or to do something differently. Each sermon is based on scripture and is full of meaning. This week was the Mother's Day sermon. Mother's Day was so hectic for us this year. I had spent several days preparing to teach the third graders and teaching them just fills your head with kids. If you've ever taught children then you know what I mean. They are so funny and they talk so much. After I leave them I need time to let it all settle. This doesn't leave much room in my brain for reflection on the sermon. Since it was Mother's Day we rushed to Chipotle after church to eat lunch and then catch an afternoon movie (The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel - my Mother's Day present). Dean has work going on all the time and Parker has had AP tests so both wanted to get home and have time to do things in the evening. Anyway, life is always like this so I rarely take the time to go back over the sermon, even the ones that seem like they were written just for me.

This week I worked on the SMASH sermon pages several evenings which meant I thought about the Scriptures and the Sermons several times and let them sink in. I was very excited with how the pages came out. I'm looking forward to seeing what I can come up with for the next sermons. Below are pictures of the notebook and accessories. Yes! the notebook has it's own accessories! Sadly notebooks don't wear shoes, however there is an elastic band to go around it that holds extra pens, there are little flags and stickers, some striped paperclips with little flags on them, Smash pads which are for recording certain kinds of information like quotes or family events, and there are pockets. I did not purchase all the mentioned accessories. I need something to look forward to!

 SMASH notebook and glue/pen.

 I glued one of the pockets on the inside cover. I keep grid paper in the pocket to take sermon notes on. I also keep some of the pages from the small smash pad that I use to record the sermon's scriptures.                                                                                                                                                                 

 Some of the pages in the notebook are already "decorated" in some way. This is the first page of the yellow Smash notebook.
 This is the two page spread of the sermon and the scriptures. I pasted the sermon notes onto the left hand page and then later wrote the scriptures from the sermon on the smash pad pages and glued them on the right hand side.

 I stamped some butterflies onto watercolor paper and then painted them and cut them out. I then glued them onto the notebook page. Then I began tangling around the butterflies.

 In the Sermon our pastor, Gerald Griffin talked about what Moms do. They protect. He mentioned three ways Moms protect.
1. Moms protect by living the Word of God.
2. Moms protect by Living Their Faith
3. Moms protect by Modeling Service.
 The scriptures used in the sermon were: Psalm 103: 8-12, 1 Corinthians 13: 4-7, and 2 Timothy 3:16
 The quote card is from the "blank" smash pad. The tangle that looks like a zig zag is called Pea nuckle and it is new.
 Some pages in the SMASH book are simple and some are pretty busy.
 Blank SMASH pad.
 Quotes SMASH pad.

 More pockets and pages.

This is the elastic band pen holder that goes around the notebook!

When I made the crosses for Lent sometimes I found myself more focused on the process of making the cross than on the MESSAGE of the cross (but not always). I think it will be the same with the SMASHing Sermons project. When I was stamping, painting and cutting out the butterflies, I was thinking about the butterflies. But when I was writing the scriptures on the SMASH pads, I was thinking about the scriptures and I was going back over the sermon notes. When you are blessed with really good teaching it is a shame to hear it on Sunday, talk over the particularly meaningful parts with your husband and family and then just sort of let it go. I don't want to let ANY of God's Word go.  I have mentioned my ladies Bible study and how much I get from studying God's word in depth. Those lessons stay with me. Maybe this will be a way for the truth of God's Word from Sunday's Sermons to also stay with me, SMASHed upon my heart. Happy Smashing!


  1. Thanks for sharing your idea about "smashing" sermons! I bought a Smash book on clearance and wondered what to do with it. I have plain notebooks for all sorts of notes, learning, lists, etc. This could help me be more thoughtful about the sermons or Bible studies - it is a kind of "Faithbooking".

  2. "Faithbooking" is a great name for it! Thanks for your comment.

  3. I think this would be a great idea to do with my 7yo son. We could review his weekly Sunday School lesson, cutting out pictures from the papers he brings home. Then highlight his memory verse to learn that week. There is nothing more important than having God's Word "stick" in his heart for life! Thanks for the inspiration!

  4. I think this would be a great idea to do with my 7yo son. We could make a page each week reviewing his Sunday School lesson, cutting up his lesson paper for pictures and titles. All his lessons and verses would be in one place for him to go back to. It is so important to me for God's Word to "stick" in heart for life. Thanks for the inspiration!

    1. love this idea of doing it with your child after Sunday school! A wonderful way to help them to remember the Word!

    2. Thank you, Dygame, I agree with Lisa - that is a great idea. I have taken a break from the blog but hope that some of it's content can still be helpful.