The Canvases

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Once upon a time, there was a little girl who loved the Lord with all her heart, mind, strength and soul.  She loved her Creator so much that she wanted to show Him.  She was really good at drawing, and she loved to draw, so she pulled out her favorite pack of crayons.  At first she colored pictures in her room alone.  Sometimes she drew very simple pictures, and sometimes the pictures were very complex and took a lot of time.  She knew that the Lord was creative and hoped He would be pleased with her expression of love for Him.  She wanted him to know how grateful she was, and so she used every color in her crayon box.

She loved the Lord so much, and her artwork showed the goodness of God in every stroke.  She wanted to encourage others to see God’s goodness and show gratitude as well, so she began sharing her artwork with others.  It was a very vulnerable thing for her to do, because when she drew for the Lord, she put all of her heart into it. She knew that others may not like her artwork, but she still hoped that they would see the beauty and goodness of God in it and that they would also be inspired to show love to the Lord.

Some people joined right in with her and started drawing for the Lord.  Some were inspired and used other mediums to show their love for the Lord with their artwork.  The canvases were a vast array of color, structure, and complexity.  More and more people began to express their love for the Lord as they experienced His goodness and power.

At some point, a few of the people began to think that maybe there were too many canvases.  Perhaps they should remove a few so that only the most complex and beautiful should be displayed.  They thought it would surely honor God for Him to only see the best and brightest.  Others began discussing how perhaps it would be better if only the simplest and least colorful should be displayed, because it would show a sincere and humble spirit.  More and more considered that there should definitely be a guideline for what was displayed.  Canvases were slowly taken down, and arguments arose because everyone could not agree what would best show the Lord the people’s love for Him.

One by one, people left.  Many took their canvases with them and split into different groups to find better places to display their canvases. Some threw theirs into the trash out of frustration.  Some threw theirs into the trash out of shame. Others threw theirs into the trash because they were confused.  The little girl became very sad.  She did not understand how everything got so out of hand.  All she wanted to do was express her love to the Lord and encourage others to do the same.  Several people let her know she should not have used so many colors.  Some thought her colors were too loud and distracting to truly please the Lord.  Others thought some of the canvases were much too tame to show genuine passion for the Lord.  Several others told her she really should have used a different medium.  Many gave their opinions on how the canvases should be created and displayed.

The little girl sat alone and talked to the Lord.  The Lord reminded her that He was very creative, too.  The Lord reminded her that He gave her the gift of creativity.  Look at all of the amazing creatures He had designed!  See the vast array of beauty, complexity, and simplicity!  Experience the absolute silence of a snow-covered morning and the extreme torrent of a summer thunderstorm!  He reminded her that He has been criticized throughout all of time, but through it all He remained steadfast in His love for His creation.  The Lord reminded her that though many will lose sight of Him when the canvas becomes the focus, He will continue to reign,worthy and victorious.  The Lord reminded her that He wanted her to love Him with all her heart, soul, strength and mind.  So the little girl went back to the drawing board and continued to express her love for the Lord with every color and design.  The canvas was not for men, but for the Lord, and her heart could not be contained.  It overflowed with joy and gratitude.

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