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Painted With Layers of Color

I love this little project. It was fun and I felt I could play and explore the different mediums I had tucked away in my art room. In art, a medium refers to all the different supplies the artist uses to create their art. This includes both the type of paint (watercolor, oil, tempera, crayons, markers) and the base on which we paint (which can vary from paper, to canvas to wood). If an artist uses different mediums in the same piece of artwork it is called mixed media.

This mixed media style of creating makes for a cool object lesson. Each life can be compared to a different medium and color. Part of the reason this was fun and is such an intriguing little piece of artwork is because I used so many different mediums. I used watercolor crayons, tubed watercolors, watercolor pens, acrylic pens, glitter glue and glitter pens). God needs ALL of us in the process of painting His love on others hearts. Every word and expression is like a different color. Each stroke I painted on these fireworks flowers can be compared to words we paint onto our family, friends, neighbors and even stranger's hearts.

When creating, most people will stick with the things that are familiar and safe! We like things we can control. I stepped out of my comfort zone and layer upon layer (parallel day by day) I painted. I wasn't always completely delighted with how the water interacted with the mediums I was playing with. Using watercolor is a bit like our walk with God. The water is like the Holy Spirit and with the water as a foundation (when using watercolor based products) amazing things can happen... but also unexpected things.

I had to push through the moments I didn't like what I saw. Is this not like our lives? We push through feelings of inadequacies as a mom, wife or a creative. Then with fresh eyes and tenacity we add layers past what we see and feel. This can be new eyes of love for our children, husband, friends and co-workers despite how things appear. Each circle completed was around a 4-5 day process. And they each had probably 6 or 7 different mediums used. It didn't have to take this long, except that I have other things in life to do other than creating. So I have to put a pause on what I enjoy to do what needs to be done around my house. Creating is about seasons and layers. Patience, tenacity and letting go of our own expectations. But with time beautiful things unfold.

When I look at these all in different stages, I feel a sort of love for each piece. They each, in their different stages, are expressions of my heart. Just gazing at them "in process" awakens hope. How much this is like God's heart for us and our children. He gazes, He adores us and sees in us what no one else can see. He calls us beautiful even we are feeling awkward or unlovely. He sees the power yet to come, He sees the purpose, He has a plan.

These little paintings can't rush me. They can't force me to finish them. They can't force my hands to write on the back of them. They can't manipulate me to tell me how I should use them or where there should go! They must wait. There are two finished that I haven't given away yet. Days may pass and they just sit where I can enjoy them. But, I have't forgotten. I simply like having them close where I can enjoy them. And it's about timing. The right person. The right soil. But, even if I don't give them away for months, they bring me joy by simply "who they are".

Each little circle has a special purpose and will touch a different person when I do give them away. As I create I don't know who I will give them to. But, stroke by stroke, my heart is/was full of love and a passion to declare God's love through them. I ponder the beautiful and powerful expression of love fireworks can be. I thought about how God rejoices over me and delights in all the treasures he has placed within me. I prayed that the hands that would receive these cards would understand the power of God's passionate love for them.

If I could make hundreds of these by hand I would. Then I would write notes on the back of one for each one of you. "God rejoices over you! He delights in you and every detail he has painted into your soul! He has not forgotten you! He fashioned you in an amazing way!"

Each life's ultimate purpose is to convey some facet of our Creator's heart. To share a part of Him that no one can. We must do 3 things:

1.) Place our lives and heart into God's presence so he can work on the masterpiece of our lives. (Practically speaking this is praying and reading the Bible and being in fellowship with other believers)

2.) Pick up the paintbrush and create layer upon layer and stroke by stroke. (Speak God's truth to yourselves and others)

3.) Give our lives away to be a blessing to others. (I will give most of what I create away to plant seeds of God's love in others hearts)

Creatives need a rhythm.... or often we will spin our wheels or spin out of control. Day by day our paintbrushes need to be filled with fresh colors of hope to paint upon other hearts. And daily our brushes need to be rinsed clean from things like fear, doubt, worry, impatience, anger or distractions.

Lord Jesus, may we seek you daily to fill us up with the colors of your love that we may paint upon other's hearts colors of hope and salvation. Thank you that you cleanse our heart of doubts and fears with the water of your word. Amen!

(Sidenote: This particular fireworks flower art card I gave to the precious manager at a nearby Starbucks for her birthday. I came close to keeping this card because I loved this little series of flowers. But, the time was right and the art we create is meant to be given away. It has way more power when we use what we have to speak of God's love and truth. Oh and those literary creatives... don't worry about painting... just write a phrase, a sentence or a paragraph onto a posty note. What you long to declare to thousands, serve that "one" soul you may never see. Leave it at a coffee shop or somewhere in a grocery store. It's an AWESOME feeling to serve God in secret ways with the gifts He's given.)

Soli Deo Gloria,


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