Do you ever think about your plans?
The plans that I want, the plans I think are going to work. I find myself sitting down, like a child with a crayon, and return to my masterpiece. It’s the one I want hung on the fridge for all of my friends and family to see. It’s my plan. It’s my future. On this paper, one will find lots of different colors, different shades and unique patterns. One will also observe places where there are noticeable marks, actually if you study it closely there are quite a few. This is evidence of me trying, growing and failing all at the same time. These marks show my story.
As I study the picture, I realize there are a lot of marks where a color I had previously used has been covered up by another one. This new color was always was beautiful. But it didn’t look beautiful to me for a long time. I thought it was an ugly and terrible choice. It made me have to change so much of the picture. The picture I had in my head, did not have purple or green. It did not have patience or delayed gratification. No, I’m more favor of the yellows and blues. I had drawn with instant gratification and eagerness. So when I swapped my blue with green; my yellow with patience, it was painful. So hard to not color with my favorite crayons. You see, I always keep a yellow and blue crayon in my pocket. Sometimes, I even reverted back to my color. Then after picking my crayon I took that piece of paper, locked myself in my closet and chose everything. I chose the colors, lines and patterns I wanted. The trouble with coloring in a closet of course is that there is not much light to see and I have a hard enough time choosing the right colors with a good light. Another problem is a closet has no fridge to show off the colors.
I soon find that filling in the new colors and lines is extremely hard but in the long run those sections have turned out better than the rest. I have also discovered that somehow those sections don’t have any marks on them. They have not been altered. I can’t explain it, but I feel peaceful about those colors.
I feel at this time in my life I am making many choices, drawing many lines, and trying to form many patterns. I have many opportunities, and a growing stack of crayons. I am happy and the decisions come all too easily. However, my past has taught me to be wary of these times. It’s no coincidence that as so many opportunities have surfaced I, Dave Hamilton (a great planner and skillful painter) am tempted to limit God’s crayon choices. Here is orange, God, you can use this one. Or, here God, I will let you use blue. Such a sacrifice. Sure I’ll give him a select few, but I sit with most the crayons, it’s like I have a 84 deluxe box of crayons and I have given God 4 crayons and a corner of the paper.
There are a few things I begin to notice. One, God’s corners somehow are better than the rest of my whole picture. That’s just not fair. His colors are unique. They are both soft and hard, they are loud and quite, they are funny and serious, they are comfortable and unpleasant. They are beautiful. Two, God won’t take my crayons but rather make me jealous of His corners. I may resent the corners at first. So different, so beautiful. I hate them and love them at the same time.
I realize that God wishes more than anything to paint my picture. I realize that if I will begin to turn the crayons over he will put me on His knee and show me how to really color. He will take big, bold strokes, then all of sudden spend days coloring a little portion. The hardest thing of course, is that the crayons are always there. The box of crayons is not locked or up on a high shelf. My paper is easily accessed. But so is my Father. I whisper his name and he is there. I shout and he comes running in the room.
Sometimes I am foolish enough to grab crayons and start before I call his name. But whether I wait and fully rely on Him, or start without Him, He always says the same thing.
Son! It’s so good to see you! Would you like to color with me?
Sometimes he makes shapes and patterns, or chooses colors that I don’t understand, let alone appreciate. However, through many lonely nights sitting, coloring by myself, I have found that I like coloring best with God.
What’s even more amazing is that my Father likes coloring with me too.