PRAYING in COLORS
January is a wonderful time to think about some New Years resolutions. I have often thought about being resolute in health and fitness, or resolute in reading more and watching less TV. I have made lists, purchased and filled out calendars, and bought countless books to help me remain resolute in achieving goals. This year my middle daughter was instrumental in organizing my artistic life to enable me to be resolute in accomplishing some monumental writing and illustrating goals.
As I think about these areas I am struck with the longevity of one resolution made many years ago. I met a woman at a conference who shared a book with me called, “Praying in Colors: Drawing a New Path to God by Sybil Mac Beth. A simple idea to draw and “doodle” your prayers using paper and colored pencils or markers. A simple idea with profound consequences. Once I started this daily practice it didn’t take long to see how invaluable it was. Creative, fun, colorful stories emerged on each page. Loved ones, friends and family, were encircled with all manner of shapes and drawings. My grandchildren were now saplings and trees, my extended family a pieced quilt, hearts and circles and stars surrounded and joined needs from all over the globe.
A few years later I read Ann Vos Kamp’s “One Thousand Gifts”. I now began the practice of looking for and finding God’s grace in everyday places. These I drew in my sketchbook, labeled and counted. I have counted from Pacific to Atlantic and from north, south, east and west. From this resolute practice came the seeds for a future children’s book.
This January please join me. Buy a 5”x 8” sketchbook, a package of watercolor pencils, an ultra- fine point sharpie, eraser, hand held sharpener and a lead pencil. Place them all in a large zipper plastic bag. Keep them easily accessible. Every day look around for one or two things to be grateful for, your “eucharisteo moment”. Write them down in your sketchbook then draw a little sketch. Color it in and outline a little with your sharpie. Be RESOLUTE, resolving to be intentional, disciplined, daily in a quest to add colorful grace notes into this new year.