“Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.”
-1 Peter 5:6
There is a devotion in The Women’s Devotional Bible written by Beth Donigan Severson that has given me much needed visuals during seasons of my life that prove challenging. If I may, please allow me to paraphrase it for you.
Claude Monet’s painting the Water Garden is painted in the round in Paris. As you stand in the
middle of the room and turn around the garden engulfs you. Then as you study the piece, one of the hidden surprises is that the majority of the canvas is filled with dark blues, blacks, and greens. These colors lie in stark contrast to the lighter pastels of the flowers. However, the painting does not translate as dark and dreary but as light and full of life. The darker shades actually enhance the lighter ones and the pastels are what your eyes rest on.
Severson relates this painting to the colors of her life. Often times we focus on the darker times so much we fail to see the blessings staring us in the face. God has a purpose for each stroke he breathes across our canvas… the difficult and the happy ones! He allows the dark blues and blacks so the pastels stand out more. When we know this, we can look back on
the times when we are misunderstood by those we considered to be our friends or when our dreams for our children are crushed or when a physician tells our precious parent there are no more options and begin to see God’s “handiwork in creating a brilliance of color and beauty from pain and suffering”.
She also writes that “just like the water lilies in Monet’s masterpiece, God keeps the leaves and petals afloat through the muck, wind and rain that are part of the storms of life. Water gardens survive April showers and worse, and I will too, by God’s help and grace.”
Isn’t that just a great analogy to life! When God is in it, it’s all used for our good! I personally have trouble seeing the pastels sometimes when I’m in the middle of the muck, but that’s when God shows up and reminds me He is there through it all … just hold on a little tighter! He has me and He is NOT letting go! What better promise could we hear than that!
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