Recently a discussion with a group of friends inspired my current drawing. 

We were actually discussing my art ministry in which I help to share people's stories within the community to promote healing, support, and relationship. There are some who are reluctant to share their story for fear of judgment, and some who close their ears to stories of struggle because they would rather see things as bright and rosy. 

This is something that has been on my mind a lot and I have been reading up on the healing properties of storytelling. An excerpt from The Healing Heart for Communities:

"I have learned that storytelling can help heal old wounds. Of course, painful stories can be told too soon, while the wound is so raw that it rubs salt into the listeners' sore places. The time for the telling, the time for the healing, is when the pain has been replaced by understanding, forgiveness, and acceptance. That is the time when the telling spreads balm on the souls of both teller and listener."


It occurred to me, we do like to see the beautiful things in life. We all carry around our burdens, and sometimes hearing other's burdens only seems to weigh us down more. We want to see the good things God is doing. But in order to see the good things, we must first except the struggles that are there. God does his greatest work when there is a big mess to clean up, or we have fallen into a very deep pit. God uses our weaknesses and our struggles to make us stronger. To deny those weaknesses and struggles is to deny God's work. 


So in summary: 

Life is not all roses. If you think it is, or that it is going to be, then you are blinding yourself to the thorns that lie beneath. And the reality is, the dirt is there. And the dirt makes the rose.


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Comment by Matt Ridley on March 8, 2011 at 8:20pm
WOW! Thats amazing!
Comment by Rachael VT on March 7, 2011 at 3:43pm

Thanks everyone for the comments.

The drawing is actually done in black Conte Crayon. The size is 18" x 24". I got it done in time to include in an exhibit for the month of March. The image brought a lot of thought-provoking questions from viewers, and it was a great opportunity to share further with others. 

Without going into too much detail right now...it is amazing how God shapes and molds us to prepare for his work. He challenges us to go beyond our comfort zone to find that greater purpose and higher calling. He is an amazing God.  

Comment by Deborah Eaton on March 7, 2011 at 2:20pm
Beautiful thoughts and drawing. Is it done in graphite?
Comment by Robert Clinton on March 7, 2011 at 8:49am
You said it Rachael! What a picture! Life, and the creation of all its beauty can tell us a real story knowing the dirt it may have had to breakthrough along the way. The dirt had a major role in making us who we are...
Comment by Deby Dearman on March 7, 2011 at 8:33am
Powerful thoughts . . . beautiful image! Thanks for sharing Rachel. I love your idea of combining stories with your images. I'll look forward to more of your creativity.
Comment by Rachael VT on March 7, 2011 at 8:22am

Thanks Eddie. 

God works in mysterious and wonderful ways!

Comment by Eddie Hudson on March 7, 2011 at 7:41am
Rachael, powerful blog and wonderful image! It is a recurring theme in everyone's life, though, it seems we only want the rose, or the sunshine, or the primrose path. That is of course, until we get bored or distracted or our humanity brings up that sense of discomfort. I marvel that so much of our lives contains both sunny and dark, glorious as well tragic, and yet, through it all, we trudge on. It is the Spirit of God that gives life in all its wondrous and glorious and painful moments. Each should be celebrated and revered. Thanks for sharing!

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