"Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear." ~Ambrose Redmoon

Friday, September 16, 2011

A Divine Masterpiece

Fuz Rana knew exactly what he wanted to be when he grew up—an explorer. He said he never told anyone though because he was convinced there were no new territories left to discover. But when he started taking college courses in chemistry and biology, he realized the molecular world inside the cell offered a whole new realm to investigate.

As he explored that landscape, Fuz began to recognize the hand of a Divine Artist at work. His book The Cell’s Design shows how chemistry reveals the Creator’s signature style. 

My youngest son BJ recognized that same handiwork as a small child. Still in grade school, one day he looked up at the sky and proclaimed that the clouds were living art. I’ve thought of that comment often over the years, especially this past couple of weeks as I’ve been getting to know a new Facebook friend.

Laurie’s life is a Divine Masterpiece in process. To be appreciated, it helps to study all the subtleties and nuances that are part of the picture. Her colors include the dark shading of prostitution and heroin addiction. A suicide attempt of slit wrists streamed blood red all over Laurie’s portrait. The jagged lines of a broken skull formed when she jumped off an 8-story building convinced it would end her life.

But, a green tree abated her fall. Strung out on methadone, she tried again and broke her back by jumping out of a second-story window.

In a full-body cast, Laurie ended up lying in the dreary pigments of Skid Row. That’s where she heard the Living Voice ask her to turn that scribbled up mess over to Him. His red blood washed hers clean. Carefully placed brush strokes worked in the white light of truth changing her poor choices into purposeful understanding and empathy for others. That set her free erasing her shame and easing her pain.

Still, fear threatens to invade in a new form. The putrid shades of cancer are Laurie's every day reality. Once again needle sticks search for viable veins, but this time, they’re administered by medical technicians trying to help, and Laurie is grateful--even for the radiation treatments that make her so sick she can’t eat or sleep. Yet, in the midst of this mess, Laurie sees the Divine Artist at work. He’s busy adding fresh tints of joy and perseverance, courage and kindness. The dark colors only make those hues more vivid and clear. The Creator paints Laurie’s canvas so others might see His handiwork and recognize hope. 

After an initial struggle with denial, Laurie jumped into cancer's unknown saying, “I would not go back in time and not have cancer because I would most likely not have the relationships I do now. I truly believe that God works ALL things together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose.”

How can we find His purpose? That's a topic for next week.

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