Several years ago, Ryan and I invited a newly married couple into our home for dinner. Only having met a handful of times, we were hoping a casual meal would facilitate conversation and new friendship. My children, on the other hand, decided that this was a perfect night to show off all their very best tantrums and meltdown techniques. There were lots of laughs (ours being of the embarrassed kind), and at the end of the night, we honestly thought we had just scarred this sweet couple from ever wanting kids.
I'm pleased that that wasn't the case, and they now have a precious (almost) 1 year old daughter....and they still wanted to be our friends!
When we found out we were pregnant with our sweet little boys, I immediately contacted Chanler to see if she'd be interested in a special project...hand lettering a quote on canvas for their nursery. I gave her my vision, and she brought it to life in the most beautiful way possible.
"Hey there!! My name is Chanler Courtney. I am a wife to my wonderful husband, Thomas, a mom to our first baby girl, Amara Grace, a nursing student, hand-letterer, and daughter of the King. All of these things come together and form exactly who the Lord has uniquely made me to be. And beyond the titles, come the blessings.
I would like to take a moment to specifically focus on hand-lettering. I began to take interest in this art form in early 2015. I have always been a crafty person so naturally, I found myself skimming through Pinterest pretty frequently.
Then one day, I came across a beautifully written piece that said, “you are fearfully and wonderfully made”. I was drawn (no pun intended) not only to the awesome reminder of this statement found in Psalm 139, but also to the lettering.
I remember thinking, “I wonder if I could write like that. I mean I have pretty decent handwriting.” I found a sharpie and began.
It didn’t turn out like I had hoped, but it instantly ignited something that would later become a passion of mine. A few months later my grandfather, who has since passed, suddenly was not doing well after experiencing a stroke post-surgery. I was able to grieve through my art by focusing on scripture which allowed me to experience overwhelming closeness to the father.
Through this new-found love of lettering, I fell deeper in love with my Savior while creating beautiful things for family and friends. It was a win-win in my book.
As I began to develop my craft, the thought of possibly selling my art kept coming up. I wrestled with the thoughts of “my art isn’t good enough” and “I really doubt anyone would actually be interested in paying for my art”. But, through prayer and encouragement, I overcame what was ultimately fear of man, and began selling custom pieces on a very small scale.
Fast forward a year or so and then was born my small business, “Love Letters” by Chanler-Shea Courtney. I am still selling on a small scale, however, I trust that my business will grow in the Lords timing. Never did I ever anticipate being a hand-letterer, however, the Lord did.
He has been using lettering to continuously reveal and remind me of His truths and to make me into who he desires me to be in Christ. He designed me with this unique gifting from the beginning of time and it will be my forever goal to please and glorify him with it. When I think back and reflect on who I bucked up and tried to be and who the Lord transformed me to be when I fully surrendered and allowed him to work, the following verses from Psalm 139 come to mind:
“For you formed my inward parts;
you knitted me together in my mother's womb.
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.
My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
in your book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,
when as yet there was none of them.”
God is good. All things come together for our good and for HIS glory in HIS timing. With that being said, I am eager to share some exciting news...
Love Letters is officially crossing over into ETSY territory. I have previously been pushing it off out of fear, but am taking this next step trusting in the Lord’s provision for my business and my family."
Welcome to Dwelling Well Mom! I'm so glad you are here! I'm Christi, wife, mom of boys, Christ follower, picture taker, DIYer, chocolate eater, and coffee drinker. Born and raised a Florida girl, now braving the mountains of Boone, NC, I'm on a journey to find peace in the midst of my mundane. Join me!