Woman with a Lamp- 1909; Pierre Bonnard (1867-1947)
When I was in college I took an art history class. My absolute favorites were the paintings. I loved how the artists used a multitude of colors, textures, patterns, lines, and shapes, to create something magnificent! These artists brought all of this together to create a masterpiece.
I’ve recently enjoyed Paint Nite, a beginner-type gathering to paint on a canvas, with guidance from the instructor. Now, I am no artist. I was mainly there for the friends and music, okay? Although we only used three colors, three brushes, and a canvas, these simple things created something so delightful (if I do say so myself), all in just two hours’ time.
Seeing and experiencing this painting process, I got to thinking. God, the Creator of the heavens and the earth, created each and every one of us. He drew every line, meshed together the perfect colors, brought forth just the right textures and shapes, and made us his masterpiece, his poem, his workmanship, and created us, his wonderfully complex daughters.
Ephesians 2:10 (NLT) says, “We are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus…”
Psalms 139:14 (NLT) reads, “Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous–how well I know it.”
I don’t know about you, but it seems like each week when I look in the mirror, I notice a new sun spot (thank you baby oil in the 80s), some new freckles, new lines around my eyes or above my eyebrows. I often tell myself, “Man, I am getting old,” as I reach for my moisturizer.
As I reflect on these passages and how amazing God is, I remember that he formed me this way on purpose. He knows the shape I am today. He knows about each freckle (or what I heard in a movie once called “Angel Kisses”). He knows about each line, wrinkle, age spot, etc. He even knows the numbers of hair we have on our head! Yet, he still calls us marvelous, his masterpiece, his workmanship.
Friends, I’d like to encourage you to embrace your shapes, colors, lines and textures. Celebrate the lines around the eyes and/or around the mouth. You know why? Because that means you have had a life of laughter and joy and have shone your smile to every one around you. Accept the colors of your freckles, age spots, sun spots; even the blue and purple varicose veins on the back of your knees. I say we start color coordinating with those bad boys. Bring on the blues and purples! You have had fun and made memories in the sun over the years. Champion the puffy or dark circles under your eyes because you have most likely been up most of the night loving on a teething baby, or you were up praying for your unruly teen or wayward adult child, learning to trust God in the process.
I am speaking to myself here too. Let’s celebrate each other and all we are made of. God certainly marvels over us and delights in us. All of us. Let’s not get so hung up on our looks. Let’s reflect back on all that has brought us those lines, shapes, and colors and thank our Heavenly Father for all those precious moments. Let’s praise him that we are “fearfully and wonderfully made”, “…breathtaking…marvelously made!” His works are “wondrous!” And that’s you sister! YOU!
Get out there and flaunt all you are! No need for those photo filters! No need to crop out part of your “shape”! I am marching alongside each and every one of you!
Hugging you so tight,