Do you know that God loves you just as you are? He loves you in the present moment, the moments past, and the moments to come. He is the divine artist who has been creating a beautiful and wonderful work of art that is you! Holy Scripture declares it: “You formed my inmost being; you knit me in my mother’s womb. I praise you, because I am wonderfully made; wonderful are your works! My very self you know” (Psalm 139:13-14).
From the very moment of conception, God has a specific plan for each of us. From the beginning, we were vibrant works masterfully painted in colorful brushstrokes, rich in harmony and unity. He fashioned our unique personalities, gifts, and talents for His glorious purposes.
Of course, God’s first masterpiece was creation itself. However, it was tarnished when our first parents Adam and Eve fell for the temptation of the serpent. Original Sin came into the world that day and entered the hearts of all humanity.
In our own personal lives without God, resentment, fear, and anger became rooted in us. Instead of relying on God’s will and grace, we found other ways to cope with our brokenness through alcohol, drugs, food, pornography, co-dependency, or some other addiction or unhealthy attachment. By no longer allowing God to guide the paintbrush on the canvas of our lives we became blurred, dull, and bleak as we fell deeper into sin, fear, despair, and hopelessness. We entered into the very guilt and shame Adam and Eve first experienced.
Yet, we were never truly lost because within each of us was that still small voice crying to be heard. Those of us in recovery know firsthand the need to respond to this voice as we surrender daily and admit our powerlessness in order to stay sober. The beautiful canvas that God imagined from the beginning for our lives begins to reappear as we now allow God, others, and the principles of recovery to paint our souls. God paints over our past and we can now use it as one of our greatest assets in helping others by sharing our experience, strength, and hope.
I have heard that the five necessary characteristics of being a good artist are persistence, patience, passion, a sense of adventure, and discipline. How strikingly similar these characteristics are to the ones we inherit from recovery and are called to pass on to others, huh? I’m going to call this a God-incidence! May we never take for granted the divine artist of all things and strive to follow His will.
As Catholics in recovery, we can participate in the Sacrament of Reconciliation and the Eucharist often to restore and make beautiful the holy canvas of our lives. And when we do, we look forward to the day when the beautiful masterpieces of our lives adorn the walls of Heaven!
By God’s grace, Kathy has been clean and sober since June 1, 2006, and is an active member of Catholic in Recovery. She also feels called to share the merciful love of Christ’s healing grace with all those suffering from the pain and wounds caused by abortion. On most days, you can find her at daily Mass, the gym, or caring for the needs of her family.