TITLE: The Artist
By Lesley-Anne Evans
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The mother sat in her chair, sipping the remainder of her lukewarm coffee. It was still and quiet in the house, yet a feeling of anticipation stirred within her. Her solitude would soon give way to the after school demands of children’s homework, music practise, necessary conversations and dinner preparations.
She sighed, returning once again to the photographs in her lap. She studied the photos closely, unconsciously raising a finger to touch her daughter’s face. Her little girl looked so young and vulnerable, her baby teeth missing in front when this picture was taken last summer. All three of the children were growing up fast.
"In the beginning God created..."
She remembered the day clearly when she had decided to be more intentional about her faith, specifically in her conversations with the children. She had been reading in Deuteronomy when she felt the soft nudging in her heart. “...talk about them with your children, when you are sitting down...when you are walking...”. There was an awkwardness about it at first, an unfamiliarity in speaking heart thoughts aloud, but she knew she must be obedient to the spirits leading.
"Now the earth was formless and empty...and God said, “Let there be light.”"
She felt that speaking about faith in a very simple way would be the way to start. After all, they had been quite young then. She remembered the first time she said something to them. They had been driving somewhere in the car, and her attention had been drawn to the breathtaking sky.
With heart beating in her throat, she drew in a breath and said, “Isn’t God an amazing artist? Look at all the colours he uses. It is so beautiful”. Their little voices chimed in with appreciation of God’s pretty sky, and she smiled when she realized this praise lay just beneath the surface. As she stepped out of her comfort zone and spoke truth into their little hearts, they willingly followed. She simply set the tone.
"So God created man in his own image...and God saw..."
She returned once again to her photograph album, realizing that several years had passed since that first venture into speaking about God to her children. Now it was almost second nature to all of them. The awkwardness was gone. Their conversations and comments about God were more mature and sometimes challenging, and one of her sons often asked difficult questions. Her daughter still thought of God as an artist, and perhaps inspired by God’s incredible creativity, spoke passionately of her plans to be an artist-missionary when she grew up.
As she climbed into her car, the mother paused for a moment to look at the winter sky and the distant mountains. She breathed a prayer of thanks to God for the beauty that she received from him every day of her life. She thanked him for the simple faith of her children that had strengthened her own walk with God.
The sun sparkled on the winter landscape, and she imagined the warmth of God’s smile upon her face. “Pretty day”, she said, and pulled out of the driveway to pick up the children from school.
"And God saw all that he had made, and it was very good."
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