Ever since I can remember I have been creating (some would say havoc! But that is down to interpretation). I remember vividly receiving a red plastic wallet containing 12 coloured pencils one Christmas and loved the feel and smell of them. I also received what seemed to me then, a gigantic mental painting box with more colours and hues than multiple rainbows.
One thing that was a must was a new pencil case at the start of the school year and it seemed one was judged by what pencils you had that you were willing to lend to another. Colouring in pictures in your exercise books was far more exciting than doing the writing. My father was good at sketching and often used to draw the pictures that went with my homework. (I once got 7/10 for my work and dad got 9/10 for his pictures – teachers were not stupid). I never really enjoyed the art class, more I think to do with the teacher than the actual art. At 11 I remember having to redo the colour wheel so many times as the teacher didn’t like what I produced, it sort of put me off. I did get my ‘O’ level art but only a D, however CEE art grade 1. One was drawing still life and the other creative expression using materials and free thought. I wasn’t good at art but I loved the process the ideas and the materials.
Just over 12 months ago in South Africa I went with my friend Hermien to her art class and fell in love with the smell of the paint, and the studio. I returned to the UK and found my own art class. I loved it; I was hooked.
Let me back track somewhat. I had been with OM for 22 years and been involved in training at various levels on four continents (if you count the OM ship Logos II as a continent of its own). I had specificallybeen praying about my future ministry. Usual questions – Am I doing what I should be? Am I doing it where I should be? Will I be doing this for the next 10 years? What does the Lord want me to do with the next 10 years? That sort of thing. One day after I had been at my art class and produced my first painting I had the sense of God giving me a box. It was a large box all wrapped up. I undid it and found brushes and paints and boards. God said go play! So I have been playing for the past year. I sold two paintings have done three painting for friends, I also have six on my wall at home and one at my mothers.
There is one thing finding something to do that is new and relaxing it is another thing when that ‘thing’ comes from God. If God has given me the permission to play and develop this gift then there has to be a kingdom purpose. OM has a ministry called Arts link – www.omartslink.org and this coming April over Easter (paarfees) I will be in Belgium for the art link outreach. I am producing a piece of work based on John 19:25-27 and Matthew 12:46-49. This will be included in an exhibition of the stations of the cross. I feel very humbled to be accepted to do this and at the same time excited. My art teacher Penny has also agreed to help me with my concepts and critique the work as it develops.
I want the work of my hands to reflect the message of the Gospel and my prayer is that I will be able to do this to the Glory of God and that it will be finished and in Belgium by 15th February.
The image is a self drawing of my left hand!