Monday, March 30, 2009

Painting Jesus (story)

One day, Jesse decided to attend Ms. Matthews' painting class. She went there with confidence and eagerness to learn. She loves art. She loves to paint. There is no doubt that the inborn skill that she have will improve with the proper teaching that she'll get from her class.

She woke up earlier than her earliest time of waking up during regular days. She prepared her clothes the day after; washed it very well and even used a lot of fabric conditioner to make it more pleasant, ironed it, then hanged it inside her room. She prepared her bag and carefully arranged the best materials that she can find and afford for the class. She then went to bed early to condition her mind. Clearly, she's excited to go to the class. No doubt that she really wanted it. She waited for a while for she knew it was still early to go. She then prayed while waiting, "Lord, I will paint for You. I will make a way so I can do something that I love and at the same time serve You. I don't know how to do it but I know I will."

Jesse went to school and met new friends. She met a lot of good people in Ms. Matthews' class. She made a lot of good friends. They had some misunderstandings but solved it soon, shared stories, laughter, tips, food, money, beliefs, and faith. They've encountered a lot of things that made their friendship strong. Jesse had some issues about friends before, that's why when she met these new friends, she knew she will treasure this friendship forever.

Some of the students in Ms. Matthews' class went there because their parents wanted them to study painting. Some enrolled because their friends enrolled. Some thought it would be cool to learn a new skill. Some enrolled because they wanted it and Jesse was one of them. Despite of the different reasons that they had, they still get along with each other and together they started to love painting. They all learned to love it. Everyday, they practiced and practice. Their class showed interest, willingness and perseverance. They all learned and improved their painting skill. They all learned how to paint well.

"Class...as part of your graduation, our school decided to have an exhibit of your works. Your final painting, which will be your final test, will also be the one that you will donate for the exhibit. Good luck and do your best!", Ms. Matthews announced to the class one day. The course will be over soon.

Jesse became excited. Finally she learned the things that she needed to learn. Finally she can now paint the one who inspired her to take the class and show it to the public. She can now express and show to other people how she loves Jesus so much. She knew even from day one that she will paint Jesus. "This is it. This is my chance of painting for Jesus.", she thought.

Ms. Matthews asked the students to do their work inside the classroom and immediately the students started to plan and think about their piece. Someone did an abstract, a scenery, a portrait of someone, a painting of the whole class painting, flowers, fruits, objects, ocean, falls, lake, garden, people, beaches, buildings, boat...and nothing?

"Jesse...can't decide yet?", Ms. Matthews asked.
"ahmm...I'm not sure how to start.", Jesse replied. She knew that Ms. Matthews was asking about the piece that she will make.
"Take your time. I know you can do it, but remember that you have to submit it next week for the exhibit."
"Yes Ms. Matthews. Don't worry, I will do my best."
Ms. Matthews replied with a nod and a smile and went to the next student beside Jesse.

Jesse took a deep breath. She looked at everybody. They were all busy. They look as if they had already planned about what to paint and how to start it. "Well...sometimes you don't have to plan what to paint. You just have to feel it, add emotions and just be inspired to paint...", she thought.

Jesse closed her eyes and prayed.

"Jesus, You know how much I love You and how much I wanted to do this for You...but I really don't know where to start. Please help me."

Without waiting for an answer Jesse decided to paint the clouds first. She decided to paint the minor details first. She felt odd but she continued and thought that maybe along the way of stroking the colors the Holy Spirit will possess her and guide her. She even started to paint her signature at the bottom and felt funny for doing it because she knew she's not doing it right.

"Jesse, what are you planning to paint?", Ms. Matthews noticed her.
"I want to paint Jesus, Miss....but", Jesse replied.
"But?"
"I don't know where to start. I wanted to do something for Jesus and I thought this could be a great chance for me to do it."

"Jesse...sometimes you can't paint someone unless you know them truly. You wanted to do it for Him. Your desire is to paint for Jesus and not just paint Jesus. A lot of talented painters can paint Jesus if they wanted to and they can even do it in a very creative way. Nobody has seen Jesus but if a painter took time to get to know Him deeper, I am sure they can paint and represent Jesus well in their works. You have to know Him first before you can love Him deeply and if you get to love Him to that level, then serving or doing something for Him will not be a problem.",
Ms. Matthews spoke as if she's not herself. If Jesse had closed her eyes she could not even guess that it was her teacher that is speaking. Then Ms. Matthews left and went to another student to observe their works.

Ms. Matthews left Jesse stoned. Jesse never thought of it. All she wanted is to do something for Jesus. She became overwhelmed of the thought of serving Jesus but hadn't taken more time of getting to know Him more. Jesse stood up and left her class. She decided not to submit any painting for the exhibit. She decided to get to know Jesus first in a level that even her love and relationship with HIM alone can paint a portrait that can touch and allow people to see His goodness.

She didn't even regret going to Ms. Matthews' class for there she met true friends. She was able to learn and enhance her painting skills and most of all learn a valuable lesson. Her main goal is to paint for Jesus, maybe that's why the course is longer than the ones who decided to just learn the skill.

Jesse left Ms. Matthews' class with a new lesson, an open heart and an unfinished painting.

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3 comments:

Eaglewings said...

I wanted more. I guess that really was the point of the article to want more. Jesse wanted more of Jesus, the teacher wanted more out of Jesse, the reader wants more out of the story, and I guess Jesus gets it all.

Good article. A great read.

Diane L. Harris said...

Paige,

I enjoyed this story. You are so right--we can't represent Jesus to anyone else until we know Him deeply for ourselves.

I hope you are well. I'd still like you to write me a guest post.

I have something for you if you read the following post and follow the directions. http://tinyurl.com/acr8pw (I'm extending the deadline for you.)

God bless us.

penlighted said...
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