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  • Stacey Darling

Blank Canvas

When I started refinishing furniture, I quickly realized that I would need to sand most of my pieces. That's also when I realized that I hate the sanding step in the process. Despite my loathing and all of my grumbling, admittedly when I take the time to sand out all the blemishes and even out the surface of the piece, I love the blank canvas that is staring back at me. The possibilities seem endless and my mind starts racing with color pallets, knobs and pulls and distressing techniques that will give it those beautiful finishing touches.

When I’m in the garage working on a piece, it’s usually very quiet and I’m able to pray and talk with God. It’s during this quiet, alone time with Him that I am really able to receive His guidance and hear Him in a way that is personal and meaningful to me.

The other night when I was in the garage sanding (and grumbling) the Lord enlightened me. I realized that it is during our times of trial and those times when He is truly stretching and testing our faith, this is His way of creating a blank canvas.

At least for me when things are going well, I have a tendency to become distant from God. Not deliberately but I think my human nature side starts feeling like “Oh, I got this. I’m good.” But then life happens and I quickly realize that I do need Him. It’s during these times that I cry out to Him. I draw near to Him because I need Him. I don’t realize it while I am in the midst of a trial or a tragedy but He is working in me and “sanding” my surface.

He loves when we draw near to Him and when we are totally dependent upon Him. I know He wants me to represent Him by living righteously and He is molding me into the image of Jesus. That takes a lot of sandpaper, love and patience because I have a lot of rough edges.

I am growing spiritually and my relationship with Him is becoming more intimate because I spend time alone with Him in prayer or reading His word. I am becoming more aware of His presence in my life. I have learned to trust Him even when everything around me is crumbling. When He sees me through to the other side, I am always a better woman, better friend, better daughter, better sister, better mom, better wife and better servant to Him. When I draw near to Him and I depend only on Him, I am a blank canvas and the possibilities are endless.

"being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." Philippians 1:6

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