A few weeks ago I got a wild hair to paint. This is something I’ve never done. But I figured if an artist can throw some paint on a canvas and it look like something I painted in elementary then surely I could come up with something suitable.
I posted my challenge on Facebook and your helpful hints and comments were great and spurred me on!
Once I stepped into the challenge I quickly learned you don’t have to create in a perfect sense to have something be of value. The day I decided to paint I totally got interrupted by life. I was discouraged. In my mind I knew what I wanted. I wanted a colored canvas with some words or a poem or something meaningful painted on it. I had a lot of sayings to chose from but the perfect words were just not coming.
The next chance I had to paint the timing was perfect. It was the afternoon of the day that God had woke me up at 4am to reveal a specific word to me. READ HERE. So, now I had my words to paint.
I began. I had a clean canvas. I had picked out colors. I realized I didn’t have an easel so I threw a trash bag down on the counter and figured surely that’d do. But seriously, I had no clue what I was doing.
I began to paint. I was fun. Calming. Peaceful. (It was, however, hard to photograph myself while painting at the same time.)
I started with the black, then added some grey, then some brown. I swirled it around, blended it and was having a great time. Once I got the look I wanted I figured I better let it dry before I start writing. Patience, Alene!! Patience.
To tell you the truth – the writing part is what scared me. I wanted to call someone up who has incredible penmanship and beg them to come inscribe my canvas for me. I wanted it to be perfect!
Late that afternoon I got my white paint out and put on my courage and started writing. I got clear to the end of the word and realized I was out of room. I wanted to cry. But instead I just blended in the wet paint, got the black, grey and brown back out and started over again. That’s about all my little heart could take for one day.
The next morning I got up determined to finish this painting so I could move on. I began writing again and with each letter I would cringe — am I going to have enough room? When I got to the Y and it all fit I was ecstatic!
Once I was done, it wasn’t perfect. I could see some flaws, but I fell in love with it. It was my creation. It had meaning because the words written upon the canvas were words given to me one morning directly from God to ponder over.
The more I looked at it as it dried I even began to love the flaws. It was the imperfection that made it unique to me. It was my word to paint and my imperfections to point out. It was something totally beautiful I created out of nothing and it had purpose, meaning, and a story. It was perfect!
I hung it that afternoon in my office and it was perfect. I hung it amid my wall of words that are all so special to me as they are great reminders, as well as gifts from friends.
To this day, every time I look at the painting I’m reminded to just “be holy” and stay focused on God. Those were what the words originally meant, but now they have even a deeper meaning about what “being holy” is . . . see we’ll never see ourselves as perfect or holy because we’re not. But just like this imperfect painting, our lives can still be made perfect in Him by us sharing our imperfect selves with others, and telling our stories of what God’s done in our lives. When our imperfections are used for His glory, we do in a sense become holy because we are glorifying Him.
Well, the verdict is still out if I’ll paint anything else. But one thing is for certain, God taught me so much through this one blank canvas.