Pain is the raw material that Artist Jesus uses to craft his masterpiece–YOU!
Pain hurts. After the initial pain event, hopelessness and despair creep in along with anger and bitterness to further traumatize your hurting heart. If you’re like me, the most damaging pain comes at the hands of the people we know best and love the most. Therefore, what on earth could be the possible benefit of all the pain?
What’s the Benefit of Pain?
God is not the author of pain. Satan carries that identifier all to himself as he works frantically to inflict pain, brokenness, and loneliness knowing he is defeated! In contrast, our faithful God patiently, masterfully, and tenderly weaves your pain and sorrow together to reveal the multiple values (shades of grey) to produce contrast in the masterpiece of you as He unveils His promise of Romans 8:28 fulfilled in your life!
Shades of Grey Highlight Beauty
To demonstrate, as an artist I have discovered that every beautiful painting has a balance of light and dark values. An equal balance of values is not the aim, instead to provide enough contrast to highlight the subject and elicit the mood to reveal the majesty of the artwork. Major Artists have studied the greyscale to learn to “see” every shade of grey to create depth, movement, atmosphere, and emotion in their paintings.
Here’s an interesting fact. Did you know there are over 100 shades of grey observed in nature, yet a computer can identify 256? Surprisingly, most of us can only distinguish 10, and that’s with a lot of intentional effort!
How to Jesus Sees You
How many shades of grey in your life? For example, the old art masters learned to paint in only black, white, and gray for many years in order to learn to ‘see’ every shade. Too many of us don’t see or have an understanding of the shades of grey in our life. We evaluate our circumstances in only black and white such as, “Am I happy or sad today? Am I rich or poor, fat or skinny, pretty or ugly?” When you look at your life do you only see your failures, or experience feelings of being lost, not-good-enough, unloved, alone, discounted, or stuck?
That’s not how Jesus sees you. When He looks at you, like the old art masters who observed 5 different shades of grey in the shadowed underside of a glossy green leaf, he sees each shade of your life caused by the pain and sorrow of the enemy’s attack, as a gorgeous addition to the beauty of His finished work of art. Each shade of pain combines to make a glorious, priceless masterpiece.
Dark Threads of Pain Reveal Beauty
God himself carefully selects each treasured dark thread of pain in your life to weave His glorious tapestry. These delicate strands of brokenness become the anchor for the bright lights and joyful color. The dark thread becomes the contrast making room for the colors to explode!
He promises to make all things, including the painful things, good for your life as He conforms you to reflect the image of the Master Artist, Jesus. Therefore, the next time you feel tempted to agree with hopelessness from your painful experience, remember how the Master Artist sees you–Glorious, Majestic, and full of Light! His light reflects in every shadow, every scar, and every painful memory. He will redeem every moment of your life to create a beautiful work of art–YOU!
The Shades of Grey Challenge
I challenge you to choose a painful event or time that you consider negative (only black) and begin to explore the shades of grey. Can you ‘see’ the lighter areas? Can you find even one thread of white? The purpose is to help you reframe the event and see from Heaven’s perspective to reveal the beauty it may have brought to your life. God’s promise to work all things together for our good even applies to the blackest situation. If you need help seeing the shades of grey, reach out to me. I have learned to ‘see’ very well.