For as long as I can remember, my self confidence has been low in areas of creativity like drawing and painting.
Never feeling good enough, I compared my efforts at school to those of others or hung back to try to get a clue what was “right”.
The result was that I never handed in a complete work because I always felt it did not come up to scratch.
This continued through my school career and culminated at the end of my Matric year when I was supposed to hand in four completed works.
I had nothing, so, in desperation, I bunked school and tried to put together something I could hand in for all four projects.
It was a hopeless task.
Just then a knock at our door revealed my art teacher: she had discerned what was happening and had come to find me.
As she viewed my attempts with kindness and understanding, I fell apart and at last, I could pour out my pain and stress.
But even this did not move the mountain although it did offer the illusion of change because during the intervening years there was no pressure to be creative.
The awful feelings re emerged when, about twenty five years later, our ladies group made a giant banner to hang in our church. Each one was expected to contribute part of the picture.
I defaulted to my panicky pattern, eventually contributing but with feelings of shame and inadequacy.
But at last, during this, my sixty first year, help was at hand as I was to find out.
During the Beth Moore bible study “Beloved Disciple” a request to draw a picture of the throne room in heaven as depicted in Revelation 14 came up as part of the homework.
The thought of drawing the twenty four elders as stick figures alone was a scary thought, never mind the rest!
The usual temptation to just give it a miss rose to mind.
Why put myself through this again?!
And that’s when it happened
I can’t explain how, but I just wanted to do this drawing.
I found myself caught up in the scripture, delighting in the magnificence and awesomeness of God and of His throne room. All fear left. What my drawing looked like didn’t matter: what did matter was that I was expressing in my own way my interpretation of this scene.
I found myself delighting in the combination of my freedom to draw without fear and the revelation that, because of the love and sacrificial death of Jesus, I not only have access to the throne room but also to Him Himself.
I was able to show my simple yet profound (to me) drawing to my bible study group without embarrassment or shame but rather with excitement and delight in Him who is at the centre.
A wonderful added bonus was that my teenaged grandson spotted my picture and asked me questions about it. This enabled me to share the Gospel with him in the most natural way possible, with him being the one asking the probing questions!
The Lord met me in my willingness to be vulnerable and I am so grateful for what He has done.