May 28, 2017

Sunday Devotional With Mr. E: Done?

One of the most challenging questions artists & art students ask themselves is "Am I done?".  You don't want leave a work appearing unfinished, but you also do not want to ruin it by doing too much.   I think most of us err on the side of overworking our art.  We don't want to give up until we've given our all to communicated our vision.  So when is a work of art done?  Honestly, I've matted & hung a painting before, but then taken it down and worked on it some more. I believe there is a heart and head connection that happens when we know we've done our best, communicated our vision, and are ready to share it with others.  That's not to say we won't question its "doneness" again, but we have found a peace in the level of completion and effectiveness in our work. 

And there came a man named Jairus, and he was an official of the synagogue; and he fell at Jesus' feet, and began to implore Him to come to his house; for he had an only daughter, about twelve years old, and she was dying. -  While He was still speaking, someone came from the house of the synagogue official, saying, "Your daughter has died; do not trouble the Teacher anymore.  But when Jesus heard this, He answered him, "Do not be afraid any longer; only believe, and she will be made well."  - Now they were all weeping and lamenting for her; but He said, "Stop weeping, for she has not died, but is asleep."  And they began laughing at Him, knowing that she had died.  He, however, took her by the hand and called, saying, "Child, arise!"  And her spirit returned, and she got up immediately; and He gave orders for something to be given her to eat.  Her parents were amazed; but He instructed them to tell no one what had happened.  
The whole story can be found in Luke 8:40-56

Done.  How many times in your life have you questioned if you are done?  Done with a relationship, done with a job, done with something you thought you were meant to do or meant to be......just DONE!  Things didn't work out like you thought.  It wasn't as easy.  It wasn't as fun. It required effort.  It didn't happen like you thought it would.  In your mind the easiest thing would be to call it done and move on with your life.  I do believe there is a time to be done with somethings(or someone), but too often I've seen people give up exerting little to no effort. I believe we do have a responsibility to put in the time & effort, but we also have the responsibility to bring it to the Lord. There are many things we see as impossible that ,with God, are possible. Sometimes we will see Him do amazing things to change the situation.  Sometimes we will see Him change our perspective on the situation.  Sometimes He will lead us to move on.  No matter, all things can be used for His glory & His honor.

May 26, 2017

In the Art Room Jammin'...


Love jammin' to Mandisa in the morning!!! I've got so much still left to do to get my room summer ready!??!  Though...I'll be back in just three weeks for the 2nd Annual Art With Mr. E Summer Workshop!  Hope you all are having a great end to your school year...I know a few of you area already done!!  I'm actually prepping for next year as I am cleaning up! Already put up my fabric on my bulliten boards for next year(doing primary & secondary colors...it is going to be a BRIGHT year!)...and I'm putting my new chair footies on!  

May 24, 2017

Another School Year Ends

We are at the end of another school year!  It is hard to believe how quickly the year & years pass by.  I know that makes me sound old...and I kind of am.  This was my 20th year in Metro Nashville Public Schools (though officially 19 because I subbed one of those years).  So much has changed over the years!! 
However, what stays the same is 

ART IS IMPORTANT!  
YOU ARE IMPORTANT! 
 THE KIDS (even if they don't act like it) NEED YOU! 

I know that at this point in the year we are just tired...done...burnt out.
  You know why that happens?  

Because you care about what you do! 
Because you give all that you are! 
 Because teaching isn't easy!!!! ha ha  

Please know you are valued!!!  I'm so glad you are out there teaching art to children of all ages!!  The world needs more of you!  

Now go clean up your room...get yourself set up for next school year...and enjoy your summer.


May 21, 2017

Sunday Devotional With Mr.E: Changed

Clay is all about change. You can mold, roll, pierce, press, throw, bend, carve, and texturize clay.   After all of that, if you don't like it you can smash it and start all over again. Even if you let it set out and dry, it can still be turned back to a "mud" by placing it in water.  It isn't until you fire it that true change happens.  When clay meets the proper temperature & time....it will never be the same....it can never return to what it once was. 



Zaccheus was trying to see who Jesus was, and was unable because of the crowd, for he was small in stature.  So he ran on ahead and climbed up into a sycamore tree in order to see Him, for He was about to pass through that way.  When Jesus came to the place, He looked up and said to him, "Zaccheus, hurry and come down, for today I must stay at your hourse."  And he hurried and came down and received Him gladly.  When they saw it, they all began to grumble, saying, "He has gone to be the gues of a man who is a sinner."  Zaccheus stopped and said to the Lord, "Behold, Lord, half of my possessions I will give to the poor, and if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I will give back four times as much."   Luke 19:3-8

Those who knew Zaccheus knew who and what he was.  They had witnessed his crooked ways.  They did not trust him.  They did not believe he could or would change.  When Jesus not only acknowledged Zaccheus but invited himself to his home....it got people talking.  They couldn't believe Jesus would even associate with such a person.  I'm sure Zaccheus was a bit shocked as well. However, an encounter with the Lord changed this man...he would never be the same...he could never return to who and what he once was.  

Change can happen: in your life, in the life of someone who you love, in the life of someone you might think will ever change.  God can use anyone, anywhere, anything, anytime to bring people to that point of change.  He meets people where they are at...not where we or they think they should be. 

May 17, 2017

WEAVING: 4th GRADE

They loved circle weaving in 3rd grade!  They have loved weaving in 4th grade!  I hope that they have more opportunities to weave in middle school & high school art.  Here are a handful of weavings from this year.  I allowed theme to select 4 regular colors & 1 specialty yarn.  I'll try to post more as the last couple classes finish up this coming week!  







May 14, 2017

Sunday Devotional With Mr. E: TIRED

When I was in college, the art building was just as active at night as it was during the day.  I'm not sure what it is exactly about us artistic type?  We seem to thrive creatively when we are exhausted.  Maybe the night offers the silence we need to create?  Maybe it is in the night we finally find our voice while all the other voices are at rest?  Or maybe it is when we are at our most tired, our minds can let down their guards enough to create freely. I remember one finals week where I went almost three days without sleep.  A mixture of procrastination, 18 credit hours, and working 20+ hrs a week probably had something to do with it. I'm not trying to romanticize it.  Trust me, it wasn't pretty!  Maybe that is why artists are often thought of as moody or brooding...THEY ARE EXHAUSTED! Such creativity seems to come at a cost at times. Such a pace can not be sustained.

He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable.  He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might he increases strength.   Isaiah 40:28-29  

Though I do not keep the same schedule I did while in college, As a husband, dad, teacher, blogger and artist.....I'm tired A LOT!  I stay up too late.  I over commit. There just aren't enough hours in my day.  In the midst of all these other "responsibilities" (really they are joys/blessings/privileges)...I'm also a child of God.  I have been given these many blessings in my life so I could grow in my knowledge of God & make Him known.  In my "wisdom" (or lack there of)....I can not seem to make it all work.  BUT GOD CAN!  He meets me in my TIRED & He challenges me in my EXHAUSTED.  He reminds me... I AM ENOUGH!  I AM YOUR STRENGTH. YOU CANNOT DO THIS ON YOUR OWN......BUT I CAN!   Isaiah reminds Israel that though they may be tired & weak...God never will.  This truth brings such peace.  This truth brings rest for a tired & weary soul.  
How are you feeling today? Are you tired? Feeling faint?  Has life seemed to rob you of the rest you so desperately need?  Look where you've placed your faith.  Is it where it needs to be? 

May 10, 2017

2nd Grade Coil Pots: Completed

My 2nd Grade students are completing their coil pots this week.  I'm really loving how they look this year.   I do not glaze(no hood/vent & kiln in my room)...so I'm having them use watercolor on bisque clay.  Then I put a coat of tempera varnish on top to give it some shine & to protect the paint.  Some years I use acrylic or metallic acrylic.









May 07, 2017

Sunday Devotional With Mr. E: Not Exactly Perfect

When I was in college, I could always tell the graphic design students in my watercolor class.  Not only did they usually dress "preppy", but their work had a certain "quality" to it.  It was technically AMAZING!   Dare I say "perfect".  However, with that perfection came a lack of heart.  It would often look like wallpaper.  Over the years, I've noticed in my own work a lack of "heart" when I focus my attention on technical perfection.  Though skill & mastery of a medium are important, art without heart is just wallpaper.  When art attempts to obtain perfection it sanitizes & mechanizes the process of creation to a point that disconnects from the intent/heart of the creator.  There is power in the passion of an artist, not their perfection.

And He has said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness."  Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.  Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ's sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.  

I'M NOT READY. 
 I'M NOT GOOD ENOUGH.  
I'M NOT WELL TRAINED. 
 I'M NOT AS GOOD AS SO & SO!  

Have you said or felt any of the above statements?  Have you heard others say them?  This comes from the lie of perfection.  None of us are perfect.  Some may seem like they have it all together, but that is only a perception(either projected or assumed).  Do we have strengths....yes.  However, God often wants to use as just as we are...right where we're at.  Sometimes that might be in our strengths, or sometimes in our weaknesses. He just wants us to have an open & willing heart.  When we become uncomfortable with our weakness...we start saying things like "I'm not ready...I'm not good enough...I don't have enough training...So & So would be better at this.."   As if we could somehow convince God that He got it wrong in wanting to use us?!?! ha ha  When we realize we are weak...that is when we are strong...IN HIM!  What have you been making excuses for?  What do you need to step forward in faith with & trust God?  In your weakness He will show His strength.....trust Him!!! 

May 05, 2017

Kinder-Awesome Portraits!

If you have been here at least a few times...you know I LOVE kindergarten!  I love them...their art...their honesty!  It is a joy and a privilege to teach them.  This week we've been using a mirror to help us draw self portraits.  I reviewed facial proportions & the shapes we use for the different parts.  Some of the students NAILED IT!! They are technically amazing for kindergarten! However, even the ones that weren't "technically" there...showed truly wonderful expression!  These portraits make my heart happy!



I saw this one & instantly thought of Flynn Rider from Tangled!
This kid has the "smolder" going on! ha ha 

I love the details of this..just precious!

This guy on the left looks like he is giving the stink eye.


I don't know if I ever look like either of these..but I have days 
I for sure feel like these!!!!

May 04, 2017

2nd Annual Multi-Cultural Fair At TGE

This is our second year for the multi-cultural fair at our school!  Last year it was a smashing success!  I still have my K-4th Art Show hanging...but wanted to join in on the multi-cultural goodness!!
K- USA    1st- AFRICA    2nd- SOUTH AMERICA  
3rd- ASIA  4th- MEXICO


I've included a link to last year's offerings!  

May 02, 2017

Training Day

What happens when friends that have been together for two decades go to a training day...
A WHOLE LOT OF FUN! 

We had a training day for the portfolio system we use for teacher evaluations.  Though this kind of work can be dry at times...there is never a dull moment when you get our crew together.  There are always more than enough snacks...laughs...and stories to make for an awesome day together!!  OH...and we did our training too! ha ha

I hope you all get to enjoy training days as much as we do!!! 

April 30, 2017

Sunday Devotional With Mr. E: Accept No Imitations

After twenty years of teaching art, I've become very particular about the supplies I purchase for my classroom.  I know what works & what doesn't.  I know that if something says "WASHABLE" I  don't want it.  In theory it is a great idea, children & art supplies can become really messy at times.  From the outside the products even look the same.  However, when you go to use them for what they were intended....you realize it is a poor imitation of the real thing.  Washable glue is extremely thin & watery.  It warps paper & doesn't really create as strong of a bond as regular glue.  Washable crayons are spotty when you color and do not have as nice of a coverage.  Washable tempera paint is transparent, and takes multiple coats to get the color to become close to opaque.  Though "real" supplies can be messy at times...I will accept no imitations.  The risk of the real thing far outweighs the results of the imitation.


 "Because this people draw near with their words and honor Me with their lip service, but they remove their hearts far from Me, and their reverence for Me consists of traditions learned by rote."
Isaiah 29:13

There are several places in scripture that talk about those who "appear" to be people of God, but their heart & actions do not match their appearance.  Lets just say...it is never good for them!  Scripture is very clear that this type of imitation is not pleasing to God.  The Lord has never wanted our "appearances"...he wants our heart.  He doesn't want us to fake it...he wants us to live it.  That can get messy.  That can get ugly at times.  We can make mistakes.  However, the results are so much more beautiful & pleasing to the Lord than those who just appear to do the right thing & have it all together.  When we look at the "heroes of the faith" in scripture, we will see that none of them had it all together. They made mistakes, were selfish at times, doubted God...and so much more!  Yet God chose to use them. Why?  They were real with Him!  They came to Him humbly & broken hearted for their sin.  They knew that in & of themselves they could not do it, but with God.....ALL THINGS WERE POSSIBLE!  Sometimes in our world today...they say FAKE IT TILL YOU MAKE IT.  That is not what God wants from us.  He wants us to be real.  He wants us to come to Him as we are.  Bring Him your messy.  Bring Him your pain.  Bring Him your questions.  Bring Him Your doubt.  Bring Him your everything!  He is big enough to handle it. 

April 28, 2017

April 24, 2017

Story Book Forest Art Show: Kindergarten

I'm going to feature each grade level in a post so you can see their work a bit better!  
My kindergarten students created works off of Hickory Dickory Dock, Jabuti, The Nightingale, and Mary Had A Little Lamb.



April 23, 2017

Sunday Devotional With Mr.E: What's Left Behind

We have so many supplies that we use in art making that we really don't pay much attention to because they aren't the "star" of the show.  However, if they weren't there, not in working order, or of very poor quality...it could impact the process or outcome of the work.  I GIVE YOU THE HUMBLE SINK!  Yes, a sink is a key element in art making!  As a painter, I'd be completely lost without a sink to obtain water for my water cup, for rinsing off my brushes when I'm through, or for helping clean up the mess when I've completed my work.  I've seen sinks that looked like works of art after the artist finishes.  I've seen sinks that look like they belong in a mechanic's shop & not an artist's studio.  Sinks tell a story of who was just there & what they had been doing.  This past week I'd been using clay with my students.  After we were through cleaning up...the sink had a film of clay.  You couldn't really tell at first when it was still wet, but the white "ish" film that appeared later when it dried..gave away that some type of work had been done in the art room.


I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers, because I hear about your love for all his holy people and your faith in the Lord Jesus.  Philemon 1: 4-5

As a believer, what are you leaving behind?  I'm not talking about tooting your own horn or receiving accolades for your accomplishments (for God). I'm talking about the personal impact that you have on people's lives in your family, with friends, co-workers, or strangers you encounter. In Philemon, we see Paul making mention of Philemon's love for God's people.  Philemon's life was so impacted by his faith/walk with God that it left an impression on those around him.  Now, it is possible non-believers might not have known what "it" was, but like the film left after clay day in the sink...there is no denying that something was at work that was positive & good.  Those kind of interactions are teachable moments.  I've had people ask me, "Why do you care?  Why do you want to help me?"  This is when I'm able to share why I do what I do...why I am the way I am...and who had left their mark on my life that made all the difference!

What's left behind from your interactions with others?  Are they encouraged, uplifted, informed, cared about, loved on...etc?  Or is it like you weren't even there?  

April 16, 2017

Sunday Devotional With Mr. E: Great Expectations

Text books, videos, articles, and online resources can give you an inaccurate perception of what a work of art looks like in person.  It might be dull, cracked, or just less grand than expected.  Expectations can sometimes cause our experiences to be less than we hoped.  One way to avoid such disappointment is to pay attention!  In art history books, images are always accompanied by information regarding artist, date, location, and size. However, numbers and text at times can provide only a glimpse without being able to see the work in a space.  You just can't substitute seeing something in person to truly observe, understand, appreciate, and ...."get it".


In the past, I've read the accounts of the women at the tomb & the disciples (basically hiding), and thought..."DIDN'T THEY HEAR WHAT JESUS SAID? WHERE IS THEIR FAITH?"  They walked with Jesus, they talked with Jesus, and they were with Jesus for several years.  How could they not understand what was going on?  There was an expectation on their part that got in the way of them truly "getting it".  No matter the preparation for what was going to happen, the repeated attempts of Jesus to get them ready, and the prophesy written in scripture that they knew...they couldn't imagine Jesus's death, burial, and resurrection.  They pictured things happening much differently.  They had an expectation that things should unfold as THEY imagined it. The things that they had read, heard, seen, and experienced were slanted to their idea of what God should do.  They were reminded in the midst of their disbelief because of their unmet expectation...."He is not here; he is risen, just as he said."  

How often do we do the same thing?  We expect God to work a certain way or do a certain thing, and find ourselves dismayed when it doesn't happen as we expected.  Our plans & God's plans don't always line up.  However, if we seek Him first...if our desire is to know Him & make Him known...if we can rest in the knowledge & experience that God is God and can be trusted...great expectations can be a healthy & beautiful thing.

April 13, 2017

...When Your Normal Is Off...

I shared awhile back about the health issue I was diagnosed with in Dec/Jan(I'll do an update post on that soon!).  The doctor visits twice a week for treatment...getting stuck...poked at..checked out over and over has really messed up my normal.  I'm not talking about being "normal"...cause who of us are?!?!?!  I'm talking about MY NORMAL.  I'm usually on top of things, very organized, type A personality.  However, with all that I've been dealing with....I'm just not myself.   This week I found something that slipped past me this year....something I don't think has EVER slipped passed me.  I've always ordered rectangular pre-notched looms for my 4th grade tapestry weaving project.  Thinking I had them in my supply closet...I walked in Monday to prep for the day's lessons...NO PRE-NOTCHED LOOMS?!?!?!  (I use these because 4th nine weeks is so hectic & kids are out so much with camp, awards, etc......it is a time saver thing!)  It was a sink or swim moment!  I remembered I had ordered extra cardboard circles for the 3rd grade circle weaving...and decided those would have to do! I created squares to put in the middle to trace...so that they had something to aid them in creating their looms.  They then used rulers to measure off their markings.  Kids really are terrible with ruler skills now-a-days...so I'm glad I could give them extra practice(but it was enough to raise my blood pressure).

I also relied on peer tutors to help out the students that were struggling!  This too is a good thing...kids need to learn compassion for the classmates & realize they can be a life line for the struggling learner!! 




(NEXT YEAR...DON'T FORGET TO ORDER PRE-NOTCHED LOOMS!!! ha ha)


April 09, 2017

Sunday Devotional With Mr.E: Rest

Selling, creating, deadlines, commissions, personal pursuits, too few ideas, too many ideas, revisions, reviews, and all the other things life throws our way.  Artists are not immune to stress, struggle, and lack of rest.  Though often painted as carefree, artists have more on their mind than making "happy little trees".  Life doesn't discriminate based on profession.  Life happens to all.  Each handles it in their own way, but the stresses life places on us all has a way of robbing us of the rest we all desperately need.  When you are just trying to survive (insert starving artist stereotype here), how can you find rest?  Can we move on from survival mode to thriving mode?
What role does rest play in that?  



The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.  He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul.  He guides me along the right paths for his name's sake.  Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff they comfort me.  You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.  You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows  Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.  
Psalm 23

We often hear Psalm 23 at funerals, but is it really about death?  When I read this passage I see a way to live. I will be the first to admit that I thrive on stress, deadlines, and over committing. However, over time that can wear on a person (even if it seems to be in their nature to be like this).  We all need rest.  We all need time to calm our heart, our mind, and our activities so that we can continue as the best versions of ourselves.  Sometimes we consider the physical need for rest, but we dismiss the need to calm our heart & mind.   We see in Psalm 23 that much of the stress & struggle that we experience can be relieved if we place our trust in the Good Shepherd.  Sometimes the  situations may continue.  However, when we place our trust in the one who leads us, we can find rest in the midst of the struggle. This passage reassures us of our God's strength, guidance, provision, and love for us.  This knowledge changes everything.  When we know the Lord, when we know the truth contained in these verses, when we know we can't do it on our own....we can find rest. 

April 07, 2017

Story Book Forest: K-4th Art Show 2017

My shoulders, back, legs, and feet are killing me today!  I'm tired & feel like I could crawl into a cave and hibernate for awhile.  Yes, it's that time of year again...ART SHOW!!!!  A labor of love!  The annual art show is a lot of work, but it is ALWAYS worth it.  It brings such amazing perspective to what we do day in & day out...having all that work on the walls  & inviting parents, community members, and co-workers to consume, connect, and enjoy the creative problem solving beauty of art!  I'm able to talk with parents & advocate for my program at such events as well!  Here is a video of the school...and I plan to do a series of posts of each grade level & the projects they created.



April 02, 2017

Sunday Devotional With Mr. E: Shine

Van Gogh is one of my favorite artists.  I love his work & am captivated by his life story.  Though we are left with an amazing collection of beauty that is a reminder of his brilliance, he spent his life searching for place/significance, falling short of ever finding true contentment.  He was a teacher, minister, missionary, and artist...he wanted to have impact on the world.  He wanted to make a difference.  He wanted to shine!  


Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, "children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation." Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life.  Philippians 2: 14-16

Our world seems to be obsessed with celebrity/fame.  People search for quick & easy ways to get their fifteen minutes(thank you Warhol), but forget about what it means to leave a legacy.  We do not have to wait for fame to have an impact on this world.  With each day we are given we can shine for the kingdom of God and make a difference in our world.  Philippians gives the believer an amazing tip for making a difference... "Do EVERYTHING without GRUMBLING or ARGUING!"  Our world needs people that are positive, hard working, and that don't put their own interests above everyone else's.  Having a servants heart that sings the praises of God can be the light this world needs!!  God has called us to shine in the darkness.  Can this admonishment from Philippians help us be that light? Can we leave a legacy by these simple acts?  Ask the Lord to reveal to you if these verses are being lived out in your life....or are needing to be lived out in your life.  


March 29, 2017

ART SHOW PREP!

The all school art show is almost here, and I'm up to my ears in "prep".  How do you know when your up to your ears in "prep"....your classroom starts looking messy(for some of you..messier than usual...I'm a bit on the OCD side..so mine starts getting messy & it drives me nuts), you take tons of stuff home(sometimes it gets done..sometimes it doesn't), you start calling in favors of everyone you know (or just flat out begging for help on social media!!!), and your blood pressure slowly creeps upwards!  ha ha  Maybe you are an amazing planner/organizer...and this doesn't happen to you.  TEACH ME YOUR WAYS!!! ha ha  


  I hang 550 pieces of art work so that my K-4 students are all represented.  It always gets done, it always turns out awesome, but it is always a bumpy road to get to the art show!  I do a theme.  I know a lot of people don't do a theme....or have very strong feelings against doing a theme.....but that is your issue & I love doing a theme!!  I start theme"ing" my lessons as soon as I get back from spring break. I attempt to do the entire nine weeks in that theme so we have choices in which project will actually be in the show.  After the art work is selected...it must be trimmed down and mounted on construction paper(it just looks better in my opinion).  Then tape gets placed in each corner.  This is to keep the "sticky tack" from seeping through the paper.  There is an oil in it to keep it from drying out..and that can seep through and ruin the work.  The sticky tack works the best at my school..you might find something else that works.  I make class signs in the theme of the art show....have students make thank you cards to give out the night of the show...collect cookies for a cookie table(my teachers love to help by bringing a package of cookies in!!)...create some activity so parents/family can create with their student...etc...etc...OH...and hange 550 pieces!! :) ha ha

If you do an all school art show....I'd love to hear some of your tips and tricks!

March 26, 2017

Sunday Devotional With Mr. E: Fear Depicted

The depiction of fear in art takes different forms: rational, irrational, minimized, and exaggerated. The artist can tap into the deepest & darkest fears that plague humanity causing great anxiety in the viewer.  They can also take a humorous approach that mocks seemingly irrational fears.  Either way the artist connects with viewer through the shared human experience of fear.  Art inspired by this theme can often evoke uneasy/uncomfortable feelings, and the viewers will not tend to linger .  Most do not want to be confronted with their fears because they believe it reveals a weakness, deficiency, or personal issue.
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give as the world gives. Do not let your heart be troubled and do not be afraid.  John 14:27

What fear(s) do you have? Are they founded in something that has happened to you in the past?  Do your fears have to deal with something you are presently going through?  Maybe your fears have to do with the future?  Though some fears can seem completely unfounded. Everyone has a "fear" of something.  The thing is...how do you handle your fears?  What we see in John 14:27 is Jesus promising a peace that this world can not provide.  How many times do we try to "resolve/solve" our fears through our own power and/or how the world tells us we should?  Jesus is not telling us we will not have problems.  Jesus is not telling us we will never have reason to be afraid.  He is telling us he offers peace in this midst of our trials & tribulations, and that we do not HAVE to be afraid.  The Holy Spirit gives us the power to not crumble under the weight of our struggles.  When fear comes upon us, we find strength in the Lord & his Truth.  Fear tells us lies. The Word of God & the Holy Spirit tell us truth.  When we succumb to fears, we are believing lies.  There is no peace in that.  Truth brings peace to our hearts & minds, and allows us to get through those times when fear would like to get the best of us.