Some years ago, before I ministered through writing and art, I had some slightly darker days — days where I couldn’t get up from bed because of the deep sadness in my heart, days where absolutely nothing piqued my interest.
It was on one of those days the thought of painting made me sit up straight. I voiced the idea to my father who was eagerly waiting for me to smile again. He immediately volunteered to drive me to the nearest art store to purchase some paint. On reaching there, I picked up a box of watercolours, a palette, and a brush even though I had no idea what I wanted to paint. My parents were hopeful and thrilled that I had finally mustered up the energy to leave the bed, my room, and the house.
On reaching home, I set out to work right away. I hadn’t painted in a while, so I was rusty. After some time, I realized the hues I was mixing were the same as my mood — negative, unhappy, and hopeless. I remember the feeling as each colour ignited the blank canvas. I didn’t feel better as I thought I would. I looked at what I had done and realized how ugly it looked. I felt more miserable than when I had started. I threw my brush aside and went back to sleep. I did not want to paint anymore. My father sighed in sadness. Those weren’t the best days. But it got better. I got better. I recovered. Jesus put joy, hope and peace back in my heart.
But it wasn’t until a year later, I discovered the canvas I attempted to paint tucked away in a corner while I was cleaning up my room. I opened it up expecting a half blank canvas, but instead, I found it completed and coloured in. I stared in disbelief at the canvas I thought was thrown aside and incomplete. Then it dawned on me — my father had finished up the canvas I couldn’t complete that day. Tears came to my eyes as I kept staring at the completed canvas. There was a world of difference between my strokes and my father’s intentional strokes. My father’s side looked way better.
As I stood there with all those flashbacks and memories, I had a revelation from Heaven. This is exactly what Jesus wants of me. He wants me to surrender the canvas of my life to Him when it’s too hard to do it on my own. When I cannot figure out the next stroke or colour I should choose, my Father in Heaven volunteers to do it for me. He will finish the work I never had the capability to even start. If only I had surrendered the brush, if I had relinquished control and let Him paint, my life would have looked so beautiful. But here I am, learning only years later what a wonderful artist Jesus is after completely messing up my life.
Friend, if you think you have made a mess out of your life, surrender your canvas. Your Father will finish the painting you couldn’t. He will write your story, and the colours will be beautiful. My dark days were followed by a beautiful display of colour I could never have imagined or achieved on my own. Some days will be filled with darker hues and some days will be brighter, but the Father knows exactly what colour needs to be thrown in to make a beautiful painting. Every colour will work together to create something glorious you cannot see at this moment. The completed work will be beautiful, and it will be your Father’s doing. Surrender the brush and the canvas. Let the Artist do what He does best.
Give God the right to direct your life, and as you trust him along the way you’ll find he pulled it off perfectly!
Psalms 37:5 (TPT)
Let the Artist do what He does best in your life. It will be beautiful. -Neeba Abraham: Click To Tweet Leave a Comment
God will take care of you says
Hi Neeba! Oh how I loved reading this. What a beautifully encouraging picture of our Heavenly Father’s love!
I started bawling right from the second paragraph, when I saw this line: “It was on one of those days the thought of painting made me sit up straight. I voiced the idea to my father who was eagerly waiting for me to smile again.” It immediately made me think of God’s care for us – So fierce, yet so tender! 🙂
Thank you Neeba for sharing these important reminders to surrender our lives completely to God, and let Him do what He does best. We can’t go wrong when we let God lead!
God bless you Neeba, and God bless your parents too:) You are blessed to have such caring parents. I am delighted for you:) I too am very blessed, my parents are amazing. Praise God!:) I pray that God’s joy will continually fill their hearts to overflowing.
Oh and your name is so pretty! 🙂 I love it!! 🙂
Have a beautiful day Neeba. May God continue to use everything you do, say and experience for His glory. Keep smiling! God bless! And please be sure to say hello to your parents for me, even though I don’t know them haha.
Blessings to you and all of yours Neeba!
~ Bomi 🙂
Thanks Bomi, I never thought that line would impact anyone but God speaks to everyone so differently.
I love the revelation you had – A Father who loves us so much that He is waiting for us to smile again. I think I see this story differently now.
I’m so glad it blessed you. God bless.
My girl!!! Love every word u write ! Ur amazing!
Michele Morin says
Neeba, this story, offered up from a challenging time in your life, is a gorgeous metaphor for what God wants to do for us every single day. May we find grace to offer up our own unfinished paintings for his skillful brush work.
And if you are interested in reading about the role of art in recovery from depression, Sharon Garlough Brown’s Shades of Gray is a fictional account of how an artist uses the spiritual practice of visio divina (sacred seeing) in her recovery process.
Thank you for that suggestion Michele, I will check it out.
So glad it blessed you!
Do you mean “Shades of Light” by Sharon Garlough Brown?
Michele Morin says
Oh, heavens, yes! Thanks, Carrie, for the clarification!
(It’s so good!)
I just looked it up, I would love to read this book. Thank you for your suggestion, Michele!
Wow! What a testament to God’s loving arms and great gifts! Thanks so much for sharing! It was such an encouragement!
This was so beautiful and encouraging to read. Thanks for sharing <3
I really needed your words today and your story of hope. Thank you.
I’m so glad it met you where you are. Our God is good Father.
M @ In Beautiful Chaos says
Beautiful and so true. This is a theme I can relate to very well, it’s even the theme of my blog:). God is THE perfect artist, and He CAN make beauty out of our messes! Thank you so much for sharing!
M @ In Beautiful Chaos
Amen! God is ever faithful to bring beauty out of our lives. Whatever it may look like.
I loved this Neeba! Thank you for just the right words God knew I needed.
Thank you, Courtney. It’s so hard to even imagine God can use our darkest moments to bring light in someone’s life but that’s what He does best.
Nancy MacDonald says
Neeba thank you for sharing your raw and honest feelings and experiences of your life. What at beautiful testimony of God’s love for us and I will remember this story for a long time. Jesus take my paint brush!!
Jaya Jacob says
Your words are always ever encouraging! Awesome Neeba!
This is gorgeous, and I needed to hear it. Thank you.
Steffy Varghese says
Amen! Amazing Neebs!
God’s intention for you is to be much more beautiful and glorious than a mesmerizing sunset or a school of multi-coloured fish.
Nature is proof that God is an amazing artist, but what makes Him the ultimate artist is that His greatest masterpiece ever was YOU!
He is still painting your life on the biggest canvas ever. He hasn’t finished yet. Many great works of art take a long time.
Until that day when it is finally revealed to you, there is a piece of work you can look at and stand awestruck and overwhelmed every single time you look at it- the work on the cross! The greatest and the ultimate expression of everything beautiful. No artist can ever replicate it or make a better piece of art than the one that was finished on the cross.
Stay happy and hopeful,
Love love love,
Steff, that is so true. The cross is the reason our stories get a chance to be told.
I can’t tell you how much I love this! So beautifully said. Thank you so much for sharing. These words touch my heart friend ❤️
Beth Williams says
What a testimony of God’s faithfulness to us. We think our past & any mistakes will take God’s love away. That is exactly what the evil one wants us to believe. This reminds me of the song “Greater is the One” by Mercy Me. The chorus “Every day I wrestle with the voices that keep telling me I’m not right But that’s alright ‘Cause I hear a voice and He calls me redeemed when others say I’ll never be enough and greater is the One living inside of me than he who is living in the world.” He is asking us to surrender ALL of our lives to Him & He will guide our paths. He will make beauty from ashes. The portrait He paints will be a masterpiece. He is the mater artist!!
Yes, I love that song! No mistake can ever change God’s love for us.
karyn j says
MY GOD!!!!! you were preaching to me! this was so beautiful and perfect post. i’ve been struggling with some things recently, but this was the most amazing reminder that trusting God will be the BEST decision of my life. nothing i can plan or imagine will even come close to what he plans to do in my life. im learnig to trust and surrender, but that is still a process. i’m getting better though and he’s working on me. i don’t know what’s up ahead, but i KNOW that it will far exceed my expectations. i just have to let go of what i THINK i want and expect his best.
thank you for fighting the darkness, seeing the light, and sharing…you are a blessing!
I’m so glad! God will always meet you where you are. If God can turn my story around to bring light to others, imagine how He is going to use your story.
There’s a quote by Mother Teresa: “…Let Him do with me whatever He wants as He wants for as long as He wants if my darkness is light to some soul.”
I’m sure that God is going to use your brokenness for His glory and a beacon of light for many others.