Painting a Life!

When did I begin seeing the whole picture? Was it because of all the beauty of the gardens that Dad and Mom planted each year? The pictures of all the bouquets and the gardens are many.

When was it that the verse, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth….” began to have color and shape and substance for me?

Was it when we drove through the vista of New Mexico and California and I traced with my eyes the shape of the mountains where God’s hands created the deep valleys and towering heights?

Was it when I noticed the many shades of green in a grove of trees? The riotous wonder of fall on our street? Was it when I first saw the ocean, and watched the shimmer of color and the mystery of the relentless energy of waves?

I look at the sky and watch the ever-changing kaleidoscope of their shapes and color and know God is omniscient. No matter how beautiful His world is, the best is yet to come..

Some paintings are pure poetry with a style, shades of color that create a life of their own. What makes up a work of art? Is there a set of rules? Oh, yes, there is the choice of medium, composition, perspective, color and proportion. There is more – there is the heart of the painting. Mary Alice Rhode gave me my first lesson in painting….before her death….”It is a matter of shadow and light.” So often I have thought about her words. I realize that without the shadows in our lives, we cannot see the light. When our life seems darkest, look for the light. It is there,

Recently I went to a local rehab for exercise to reclaim a broken shoulder. Each time I went, I saw the works of Jan Ironside. Her use of color energized my spirit. One study of leaves in particular provided a plethora of color in the leaves – green, yes, to which were added yellow, white, and blue. As I studied the painting I saw the back ground that emphasized and projected the leaves. I saw that some of the leaves were behind the leaves that were projected. Some were placed before and some were placed afterward.

When I began painting murals for church for various purposes, I wondered if it would be possible to do. I had no training.

I learned more than applying a brush with paint to a canvas; I learned that we all paint the lives around us into the masterpiece each one will become using God’s colors. Lives are shaped by the colors we apply on the brush to that life. Painting a life is a work in progress.

The scripture shows that before birth God painted each life with His gifts and nurturance. Psalm 139:13-14 – For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearful and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful I know that full well

Just as we leave heart-prints on those around us, God left His heart-print on our lives. We also paint the lives for how we have chosen to live our lives becomes he theme and provides the basis we impart to others..

What color is love, or peace or joy? What shades of pigment are kindness, gentleness and goodness? What strong color is patience or self-control? For these are on the palette that we apply to the lives around us. Yet it is easy to muddy the colors and find we have applied the colors of hate, envy, anger, dischord, free will, impatience, rebellion, misunderstanding

Whether we leave heart-prints early on and become the background of a life, still, we have brought a luster and depth to that life if we have chosen the God-palette.

With a painting, you don’t have to go back and paint it again. Joni Mitchell

This certainly applies to how we apply paint to those around us – there are no ‘do-overs’.

Psalm 27:1
Of David. The LORD is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life— of whom shall I be afraid?

Psalm 63:3
Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you.

(Another link to Jan Ironside – http://www.etsy.com/shop/ironsideimpastos?page=2)

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