December 21, 22 & 24, 2018
Theme- Hope is Born
Lutheran Church of Hope
West Des Moines, Iowa
Life transforming experience! My fear of getting in front of people felt larger than life and paralyzing before I stepped out onto that stage. The weeks leading up to the first performance was a full on battle between good and evil in my mind. Just the thought of being on stage made my hands sweat, my heart race and made me a bit nauseous. But I heard God saying “stay calm and steady.” By believing that God is working through me and no matter what happens it will be an amazing moment I became calm and steady.
Right up til the day of and then minutes right before the real thing was about to go down I had a rollercoaster of emotions inside. But lots of praying and a steady flow of deep breaths i put my self and my heart out there and I just went for it. I walked right out into the light and I painted in front of thousands of people. By the 3rd service I was falling in love ❤️with sharing this gift! It’s amazing what we can tell ourselves and talk ourselves in and out of. God has the best advice!
Focusing on a child’s perspective of Christmas lead me to paint a huge present with a big bow on it. We put so much focus on the gifts and decking our halls during the holidays. We put all this time and energy into preparing for Christmas, wrapping everything beautifully, stringing lights to make it feel magical and primping everything to make it perfect just to tear it all apart. Christmas can bring an indescribable feeling of excitement and pure joy when we truly realize the best gift.
I created a surprise painting under the present painting so the true gift could be unwrapped before everyones eyes. I felt called to have my niece be apart of this live painting. She represented the child and all the children at heart who are in suspense of what’s inside the present. Hope was born into this broken world so we could find peace that passes all understanding and have eternal life in heaven with God the Father.
By the time the magi made it to witness the miracle and prophecy being fulfilled, baby jesus would’ve been around 1-2 years old. I kept seeing a visual of baby Jesus touching the cross, the path which would ultimately lead him to his death and redeeming us all through his resurrection. God the Father creator of Heaven and Earth gives the ultimate gift to everyone. His son and the sacrifice of his life to free us from sin.
This was my first live painting and before I even knew the theme ‘Hope is born’ I had this feeling my niece Ella would be apart of it somehow. Ella Noel was born 2 months after her dad, my brother Eric, tragically died in a plane crash in 2006. She was literally the hope born for my family during a time of extreme distress and sorrow. God carried us through the fire and He will do it every time.
This has been a significant experience that has completely transformed my fears and deepened my faith. I feel God more than ever working through me and I have witnessed God working through so many others in a big way. I can’t help but feel excited! Thank you to all Hope staff, all volunteers, the entire congregation and everyone for choosing to follow Jesus!
Thankful my niece Ella got to be apart of this with me! She has the courage of a lion and has inspired me so many times with her brave heart!
❤️the white hearts with the initials in them are for people I was praying for while I painted. So many more people are hurting, have hang ups or health issues or are about to make big life decisions and I pray they find peace, freedom, comfort and strength. Life’s short…pray more!
Materials: Acrylic, ground coffee, cedar sawdust, string and sand on canvas