Hold On For the Wild Ride

rollercoasterWorking in ministry for the past many years has been an amazing vocation.  My story is that I had worked as an artist most of my adult life.  My husband and I owned and operated a stained glass studio in Southern California in the late 70’s and early 80’s.  Our youngest son worked along with us for much of that time.  What great learning experiences I encountered!  Then when we moved to Humboldt County I painted regularly for a dozen years – had my work in galleries, sold paintings, and gave some private and group art lessons.  Then as we became involved with my then young daughter’s Christian private school and began work on a Biblical Counseling degree, I experienced a call into ministry.  I began teaching the Bible in my daughter’s school and within a short amount of time a few others and I founded an elementary Christian school where I taught Jr. Highers.  It was a tough assignment, but a great one.  How I loved those kids!  And then an opportunity opened at my church and I stepped into ministry there and through the next thirteen and a half years worked in various capacities and it has an incredible ride.  I could write volumes, and perhaps someday I will.  What a privilege to share with individuals the deepest parts of life and to have the experience of being able to share the hope found in God’s Word.

There is physical painting, which I enjoy greatly because it reflects, in just a small way, the magnificence of the Great Creator.  And then there is painting on people’s souls which means a lot of listening, a lot of prayer and then painting a picture of what God is able to do in their lives, based on the promises in His Word.  Counseling is like being a “Soul Artist.”  Yet, it is God that does all the work and creates all the beauty, especially out of dark and seemingly mismatched colors.  He takes hurts and heart ache and in His time, sets them in just the right place.  Those dismal colors, set next to the bright colors make the combination explode with intensity, beauty and brilliance.  In counseling and in ministry I have just have had the opportunity to point people to the great Master Artist. who alone can make beauty out of things that appear to be discordant.

And now I am on the edge of a new chapter in my life.  I know not what is ahead exactly.  But I know God’s story within me continues just as it does in each of us who has asked Christ to come into our heart and be our Lord, Savior and guide.

A verse that moved me this morning is, “So my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable.  Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.”  I Corinthians 15:58

These words are true no matter what our life’s vocation, because “every job is a Christian job, for a Christian”.  God is good, life is an adventure.  So I would say, hold on for the wild ride!  Stay true to Christ.  Allow Him to work in the bright colors as well as the drab and even painful colors in your life.  And always, always, know that the Great Master Artist has a glorious picture in mind that you and I could never imagine.

 

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