Wednesday, March 6, 2013


On Monday I had coffee with my friend, Kathy.  She is pretty fun and amazing: teaching art to pre-schoolers through middle school, going to India each summer for several years on month+ long mission trips, leaving an established congregation to become part of a new church plant.  This lady has passion.  Oh, and she teaches Christian yoga, to stay focused.

She asked if I was interested in having her help with a session of an upcoming retreat.  She has this great idea about everyone learning to use watercolors as we seek to become more fully all God has created us to be.  She began to tell me about her idea, and a parable began to unfold.  "When you use watercolors," she said, "you have to give up control of the picture you are painting.  The water will make its own way.  You can't control it.  To do a beautiful watercolor picture you have to watch where the water flows, and work with it.  You can't try to change it, cover it, or fight it."  This is so good!  It sounds like surrender to me.

As I thought more and more about Jesus being the living water it took on profound meaning.  As Jesus flows in, through and around me I need to surrender to the picture Jesus wants to paint.  I can't force the picture to look "My way."

Al and I are once again in this "waiting season," not knowing where God is taking us, or how the picture will unfold for life beyond April 15.  One of the lessons God has taught us is that when you are called to this interim lifestyle you better get good at living with uncertainty, or you will go crazy.  So once again we are forced to give up day by day, knowing that the One who calls us and claims us will provide and has something more beautiful ahead that we could ever paint or imagine.

In my "faithfilled" times that is exciting and just fine.  In the moments when I'm not at my "faithfilled" best it can get a bit scary.  So Kathy's parable about the watercolors is sinking deeply into my soul as I seek to watch where the water is flowing today, and leave the Master Painter in charge of the picture of tomorrow.  

I wonder what kind of picture Jesus is painting in you.  I'd love to hear about it!