Wednesday, April 28, 2010

one stroke at a time

There are nights I fall asleep to watching the great Bob Ross paint. This man amazes me with his talent, but he never fails to give all credit and honor to God, who has given him great blessings.
As I watch him make those first few strokes I am thinking, "What is he doing with that color?" Then he will make a few more, and it begins to come together before my eyes, and then out of no where we will add something that looks like it doesn't need to be there, but wow, did it ever. It needed to be there to bring this work of art together.

As I watch him, it looks so easy. He makes graceful strokes, and uses this huge brush to make delicate changes that I can not seem to understand how he does it.

Just when I think he is all finished, he adds a little more. He always shares how you can keep adding, and with each stroke added it only gets better. He shares how when he makes a mistake, he can still create beauty from it.

Our lives are the same. They are like a giant pallet before God and He has the brush. As He adds, sometimes we don't understand why He has placed something there we obviously think shouldn't be, but He uses it to bring more glory to the portrait. With each brush stroke He creates in us a masterpiece. It is always an original, none other like it.

With each new color, each different brush needed, each new stroke, we see the beauty come together and one day we will see the whole portrait before us and understand why each piece was added. It was needed to bring it all together.

Only God can take our mistakes and us them for His glory. He erases our sin and castes it away never to be seen of or heard again. With one mistake, He can take the brush and cover it with His creative hand.

He can take a dry canvas and create something beautiful. We are that canvas, and He has the brush in His hand. Ever try to paint when someone is trying to remove the brush from your hand? It's not easy, and strokes become harder and paint seems to fly everywhere out of order. If we give the Lord control over our lives and stop trying to take the brush out of His hands, He won't have to make so many corrections. And that painting will have the right color, the right texture, and volume. When we allow Him to paint before us we will sit back and only see the beauty before us. We will look at each piece just as I do with Bob Ross. At first I may not understand where he is going with the design, but in the end it all comes together like nothing I have ever seen.

I have seen those sit before artists as they are painting their portrait. Ever try to sit still for that long while all you want to do is get up and move about, doing your own thing? When God is calling us to sit still before Him, it is not always easy, but in being still we are obeying Him. Through obeying Him, the blessing will follow. He knows when we need to sit and when we need to move. He knows when things need removed from our lives to bring more glory to Him.

As I look at my canvas before me I can see some of the strokes I didn't think were going anywhere,have only brought blessings before me that I didn't see coming. I can see my mistakes that the Lord has corrected and created something new. I can see clearly where I tried removing the brush from His hands and placing it in mine. And too I can see where I was to be still and only thrashed about. But through all God can create beauty. There is no canvas that is a lost cause. There is hope in every stroke before us.

I am sure one day we will come to see that all of our canvases fit together like pieces of a puzzle. How we are all connected together through Him only adds more beauty to the heavens above.

Ephesians 2:10 "For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."

Psalm 139:13-14 "For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother's womb. I will praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well."

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