Scripture tells us that we are to weep when others weep and rejoice when others rejoice.
I did a lot of both yesterday. There are a lot of people hurting in this old world. Aren’t you glad we have friends to run to in our times of need?
There is also much happiness. Friends are adopting precious children, long-prayed-for weddings are in the planning phase
and at least one special friend just opened a jaw-dropping new shoppe. I was so happy to be one of the honored guest at the grand opening of Parish last night.
You know all of those talent shows that are so popular on the telly? I shared with a group of friends about a particularly inspiring one that I saw recently.
The contestant stepped onto stage armed only with a very large canvas and some buckets of paint. The judges were skeptical as they asked what his talent was.
“I paint large works of art in 90 seconds.” You can just imagine the eye rolling and the yawns as sideways glances were exchanged.
“OK, let’s see it.” The bored judged responded.
The music started. The artist began to paint. Large brushes flew across the canvas and seemingly unrelated colors in random patterns filled more and more of the space.
There was just one problem. It wasn’t very pretty and none of it made sense.
As the crowd became more and more restless and the judges irritated at this ridiculous waste of their time the music stopped. Time had run out. The master artist seemingly had failed.
Standing calmly before those who judged his actions so harshly, the artist waited to see what his critics had to say.
“Well, you certainly finished on time.” came the sarcastic response from one. A kinder response went something like this, “Sir, can you explain to us what this is supposed to be. I can’t make sense of it.”
Smiling, the artist replied, “Perhaps it is because you aren’t looking at it properly.”
Grabbing the still wet canvas he flipped it upside down revealing a stunningly beautiful portrait that he had painted upside down and backwards.
Tears followed gasps as the stunned crowd realized the genius that had been at work before their very eyes.
Just as the beauty that is portrayed in these pictures did not happen by accident but with much planning, envisioning and patience, often the “mess” that is our live is not really such a mess at all.
The Master Designer is painting the beautiful original work that is our journey in this world but we cannot yet see what the finished work will look like. For we see through a glass dimly and we fret about the blobs of useless paint that are thrown in the midst of the lovely picture that we are striving to create. “If only that black had not falling into the middle of my perfect shade of blue my sky would have been bright!
Then one day we quiet ourselves long enough to ask the Master, “What is it that you see in my painting?”
One day, He will turn our canvas around and we will see. And we will know. And the black spot that was in my perfect sky was really the pupil in my blue eye. If only it could have seen.
As designers we also often work for people who are not able to “see” the finished project. We ask them to trust that we are able to see the end from the beginning. It’s good advise. I need to remember it about life.
Thank you for inviting me to your lovely party, Ashley Gilbreath and the girls of Parish. You knocked this one out of the ballpark.
More importantly, thank you for being true friends. I am thankful that our journey together will never end.
If you haven’t been yet, jump in that car right now and head over to Graham Street in Montgomery, Alabama and see the Parish magic. You will be glad you did.