That my heart may sing to you and not be silent. O LORD my God I will give you thanks forever. Psalm 30:12.
Probably about a year and a half ago the Lord planted in my heart a desire to do drawings like this inspired with scripture. Scenes that I'd want to hang in my daughter's room, or the bathroom or even my room for that matter. I have ideas for boy's rooms too.
But then I got sick and started having weird symptoms that included joint pain, fatigue and hair loss. I didn't know what it was for months and months. But last September I finally had a diagnosis. It was lupus.
The lupus derailed me from pursuing this dream for awhile. But I am getting so much better. I still have flares where I can't draw due to my knuckles hurting, but I feel better more than I feel bad.
It has been a long road of confusion and learning to lean into God in a way that I never had before. I'll admit all last spring and summer I was struggling just to get through the day. I had to put this dream on hold in a big way.
But in the process of being brought to a point where I needed God desperately He has taught me so much. So much I wouldn't have learned if getting here had been easy.
We pray at night for all kinds of things with our kids. One of the constants in our prayers is for wisdom, godly wisdom.
One day months ago my three year old said, "Lupus is kind of like wisdom." Sometimes she says the most profound things without even realizing it.
Because she is so right. I have gained so much wisdom through this experience. Wisdom about my health, about eating really well, about the need to listen to my body, to treat it as the temple for the Holy Spirit that it is, about drawing close to God. My faith life has grown by leaps and bounds. I've gained a spiritual wisdom that I wouldn't trade. And even in that I know I have so far to go. But I praise God for where he has brought me to this point, even if it was hard.
I'm so grateful for the blessings that have come out of it and I'm believing the Lord is healing me.
This piece was inspired by friends of ours who just baptized their 8 year old daughter. He is a pastor and they did it at a beautiful home in the backyard pool. She is adopted from Korea and wants to be a marine biologist. I wanted to give her a special gift for her baptism.
Finding time to draw sometimes can be hard with three small children, but again the Lord just opened doors that week. I had the inspiration, we were at the Huntington Library in the Chinese garden and my kids were playing so nicely by the stream that I sat down and drew. I was able to finish it in that little window of time.
Then that night, I'll admit I stayed up a bit too late to get it done, but as I did the digital painting I got lost in the time. Her mom said her eyes brightened when she saw that the girl looked like her and was riding a dolphin. I'm so glad it will be a memory of her special day of committing her life to the Lord.
And that it'll remind her to sing to the Lord, to not be silent, and to give him thanks forever!