I’ve been thinking about my life as it has been and as it is becoming. Now, that’s something to seriously meditate upon. As I contemplate and consider how life has changed in my many years, it strikes me that life is a process – A process that, as believers in Jesus, God uses to paint our portraits.
The painting of a portrait takes keen observation and significant time. The artist must closely examine the person he’s painting. The idea of the Lord God not just knowing “about” us but intensely observing every feature of our lives is very intimidating indeed.
The good news is painting a portrait is not the same as just taking our photo – photos show the reality of what is there. No, God Himself, as a master artist, is painting our portraits. As the artist He must look at what’s there and decide how best to represent that feature in His painting. That’s art. A skilled artist emphasizes the good features and can lessen the negative aspects of the subject. As the most accomplished artist, God decides how to depict His subject (you and me) in the best possible light.
I’ve been thinking that is exactly what God is doing in our lives as believers. He’s painting our portraits, not as we are but as He sees us and as He wishes to show us.
As spiritually growing Christians we sit in His presence for hours. Our quiet times of prayer and study, our worship times, and even the time we spend petitioning Him for His mercy and miraculous action all add up to time during which God Almighty works on our “life” portraits.
He sees into our eyes and takes the tracks of tears and paints them into laugh lines and puts a sparkle of joy in their depths.
He observes our head and shows that it is connected to a new and rejuvenated heart.
He shows our ears as hearing His Word and refusing to listen to the evil of gossip or negative comments.
He looks and sees necks, stiffened in resistance and anger, and softens them with a stroke of His miraculous brush of love and mercy.
God remodels our shoulders from those hunched with cares and the burdens of worry into strong supports for arms and hands uplifted in praise.
He sees quivering chins on the verge of sobs and brushes on the set expression of determination and understanding.
He examines frowning mouths filled with ignorant proclamations or just plain vile language and paints a smile proclaiming the good news of His greatness and grace.
The Lord looks, He paints, He looks again, and as He works, He smiles and knows we are going to be a masterpiece.
As God paints and our portraits change, we catch glimpses… we see just a little but we know when God is finished we are going to be wonderful. Ephesians 2:10 says,
…WE ARE HIS WORKMANSHIP, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.
When we first acknowledged Christ as our Savior and asked Him to be Lord of our lives, we were a brand new canvas.
Therefore if anyone is IN CHRIST, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; BEHOLD, NEW THINGS HAVE COME. 2 Corinthians 5:17
We are re-born and His portrait begins. As a diligent artist He works on our portraits for years and years. He wants it perfect. And when He decides it’s done, He calls us home to His throne room so we can see for ourselves.
We will be amazed, He will be pleased, and it will be revealed that the longer He worked on our portraits the more and more we began to look like His son, Jesus!
Just as we have borne the image of the earthy, WE WILL ALSO BEAR THE IMAGE OF THE HEAVENLY. 1 Corinthians 15:49
For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ; WHO WILL TRANSFORM THE BODY OF OUR HUMBLE STATE INTO CONFORMITY WITH THE BODY OF HIS GLORY, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself. Philippians 3:20–21
I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for the unveiling.
Think about it.