Posted on: April 29, 2021
“Go inside the art gallery.” The thought arises from nowhere. My body resists at the suggestion. It’s been months since I sketched and studied the great artists. “Go inside.”
No one’s there. The watercolors and the oil paintings on the wall are breathtaking: scenes of waterfalls that I expect to hear water gushing from. There are portraits from long ago, people dressed in their finest clothes, and then there are vivid countryside scenes. â€œBeautiful,â€ I whisper. The lights flicker. Suddenly brushstrokes of color from nowhere begin striking the beauty out of the paintings.
â€œNo!â€ I scream, my throat drying up, gasping in horror. â€œNo. What’s happening?â€ Still the brushstrokes carry on until all the paintings are devoid of beauty. Seeing their destruction, scalding tears fall down.
A hand touches my shoulder. I shiver. Looking up, a man, he smiles, his clothes radiating light. His voice like gentle waves, soothing says, â€œI can see how distraught you are. Beautiful paintings ruined in seconds. Does it remind you of anything?â€ I shake my head, speechless.
â€œI can see the hurt and the longing in your heart, precious one. I feel that longing too. All creation longs to be restored to the vibrant, beautiful, alive, holy state the Creator made you in. On the day Adam and Eve first went their own way, the fullness of beauty and goodness was stolen. God aches for all to be restored, for you to be restored, for you to be near, for you.â€ He looks into my eyes, and I don’t want to look away. â€œThat’s why God did something wonderful. Through His Son, He made a way for every brokenness to be made whole.â€
His words start to give me hope. But my stomach plummets as I hear the familiar words in my head. â€œYou’re no good. You can’t succeed. Why are you drawing? Hideous.â€
Then the man speaks. â€œDear one, you are God’s masterpiece. His gentle hands formed your inmost being. And since you’ve put your trust in His Son, you are recreated in Christ Jesus. Years and ages ago, good things were planned for you to do. Your art matters.â€
â€œHelp me, God,â€ I pray. The man holds out his hands, and their light restores the paintings to their original glory. Absorbed in the paintings, I glance back, but the man has gone. Yet I feel a peace beginning to grow inside me. I am forgiven. Renewed. • Cindy Lee
Thank you for making me so wonderfully… Psalm 139:14a (NLT)
Isaiah 43:1-13; Matthew 6:25-34; Philippians 4:4-9