Sunday, June 28, 2015

Painting Advice

I love to paint!  Oh no, not the small brush and canvas type.  I leave that kind of painting to my gifted husband.  I am talking about the roller brush and a blank wall.  That is my canvas!  There isn’t much that is more satisfying than watching a room being transformed in a matter of hours.  And it all happens with a brush, a roller and a bucket of paint.  Easy….right?

During one of my past painting ventures my husband entered the room.  “Pretty good, huh?”  I waited for his response and when I didn’t hear one, I threw in another statement:  “I love to paint and I think I’m pretty good at it.”  Hmmm.

This was the moment, I am quite sure, Charlie had to make a decision.  Would he let my statement rest or would he tell the truth?  I am thankful he made a truthful statement, although I must admit I did not necessarily receive it well at the moment.

“You have drips.” What?!!!  I don’t have drips!  Where? Sure enough, there were plenty of dried drippy paint places around the room.  And in that moment I realized I was looking at my work through a stilted lens.  But guess what?  Every paint job from that day forward was done more carefully and although the drips have not completely disappeared, I am much better!  (I grimace every time I look around a room in our home that was painted before Charlie offered me truth.)

Looking back, I am thankful that someone (in this case, my husband) chose to tell me the truth.  It gave me an opportunity to improve my technique and enjoy a much better finished product.

Do you know the Bible addresses this very idea?  No…not painting a room but the need to “tell the Truth in love”, which also means having a willingness to receive truth. 

One of my favorite Bible verses is Proverbs 27:17, “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.”  When we discuss, challenge and share God’s Truth with each other, our focus gets “sharper” and we tune in to areas of our lives that need to be given over to our Lord.

In even stronger terms James 5:19 & 20 tells us to help each other turn away from sin. “My brothers (includes us women also!), if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring him back, remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save him from death and cover over a multitude of sins.”

My encouragement to all who value truth and want to live Christ honoring lives is to stay open to those who love God and you; invite their advice, admonishment and constructive criticism (given in love).  As people of God, we are to help one another stay on the path that leads to holiness.  I know, this side of heaven, my life will not be without “drips”, but through the love of others, those “drips” will be discovered, fixed and even eliminated before they dry and become permanent. 

John 8:32, “Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”



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