Tuesday 23 November 2021

Lord, make my mess into Your message


Notes from a recent sharing with a few artists.

1. View the following and share responses:

- Broken Hallelujah by Dawn Schneider

- O Come, All Ye Unfaithful by Sovereign Grace Music

- I Will Rise by Chris Tomlin (with paintings from Arts Release Creative Studios)

2. While thinking about all the problems and challenges you've faced this month/year, draw lines across a piece of blank paper using a pen/fine tip marker - they can be zigzag, wavy, curved, spiral etc, and in any direction.

Next, colour in the spaces created by the lines while allowing God to show you where and how He had showed up in the midst of your troubles. What do you see in your picture?

Egs of the kind of drawing can be found at

- Nandrigal Yeatrukollum (Accept My Thanksgiving) by Jeswin Samuel (with video of Aimee drawing and colouring in)

- Endless Praise by Anne Soh

- By His Stripes by Anne Soh

- Big Picture by Anne Soh

Bible passages (read aloud while artists are colouring in, then share insights after):

Psalm 42 - aspects of this Psalm can be seen in the painting Broken Hallelujah, also it reminds us to draw near to God in our lowest moments and put our hope in Him even when the solution isn't apparent

Jeremiah 18:1-6 - the clay may look messed up but the potter has a plan to mould it into something good / useful / beautiful, and God uses it to tell Jeremiah a message for the nation.

Hosea 1 & 3 - the prophet's life is way messier than any makjang K-drama plot but God uses it to reveal His redemptive message for the nations.

John 8:2-11 - instead of answering the men immediately, Jesus started writing in the sand. Some translations say He was drawing lines, much like what we did in this activity. Ultimately, people were convicted of their sin and the adulterous woman was forgiven.

→ Whether it's through pottery, drama, drawings or any other artform, when they depict how God shows up in the midst of our messy lives, He will use our artworks to bring across His message of forgiveness and redemption.


Habakkuk 3:17-18 - we will rejoice in the Lord even though we may be going through hardship, pain and suffering, and don't see any results.

→ When stories / artworks project hope while being authentic and “firmly aware of the brokenness within which we live and build, suffer, expect, laugh and cry,” (Seerveld, 2000) they will become vessels to change the hearers and “heal our wounded souls.” (Mead, 2017)

1. Calvin Seerveld, Bearing Fresh Olive Leaves: Alternative Steps in Understanding Art (Carlisle: Piquant, 2000), 112.
2. Geoff Mead, Coming Home to Story: Storytelling beyond Happily Ever After (London and Philadelphia: Jessica Kingsley Publishers, 2017), 3.

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