Beyond the Horizon: Living for Eternity

001I love how God uses our unique talents and gifts to teach us something about Him. Today I’m pleased to welcome Doni Stoner, one of our Equip Her ladies, as our guest blogger. An award-winning artist and poet, Doni shares the insight she gained from a recent painting she created.

I am an artist, but most importantly, I am a follower of Christ. While creating this painting, I felt as if the Lord were by my side . . . as if He were holding my hand. Come join me on this hope-filled journey.

As an artist, my inspiration precedes my creation. I must remain flexible as I create. I make a series of adjustments, each one building upon another. The finished piece is only a shadow of the original inspiration. Just like my walk in Christ. I watch Him set His plans in motion . . . arrange my life . . . then, unexpectedly,  move again. I am only a shadow of where I began. As I learn and grow in Christ, I continually change.

I find much of my inspiration through nature. As I create, God the Creator of the Universe expands my vision of Him. Several years ago I was drawn by the expansive nature of the sky. All the while the Lord was quietly speaking to me of His greatness.

I recently painted this impasto alla prima oil painting.002

As I rapidly applied thick layers of paint, I began to pray. I sensed the presence of the Lord with each stroke of the palette knife. In this style, wet into wet, I have less control of the paint. Once again, I am reminded to let go . . . trust . . . pray. After the completion of this piece, I knew in my heart the Lord was speaking to me.

As I peered into the distant horizon in this painting, I couldn’t help but ask myself, “What am I seeing Lord?  I know there is a story here.  What are you trying to say?”

I often refer to the dictionary when creating a title for a painting. So I looked up the word “horizon” in the Webster dictionary. The first definition says: the apparent boundary between earth and sky. The second definition states: the limit of visual or intellectual perception. What an amazing word picture. I am reminded—both the spiritual and physical have a direct influence upon each other. There is only an apparent boundary between the two. Also, in faith there is a limit of visual or intellectual perception. What a beautiful image. Patiently, I wait . . . praying and pondering . . . asking for direction.

Here I sit today . . . still asking, “What are you trying to tell me, dear Lord?” Then the Lord gently whispers. He reminds me of the scripture reading from this morning. I sense His still quiet voice.

“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1 (NASB)

The answer is clear— faith –hope in Christ alone. When darkness surrounds me I must look toward the light . . . pressing in . . . moving on . . . living beyond the horizon.

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