“Christie! Come in here and get a look at this!” I knew it had to be good, ’cause not much makes my sweet husband yell. So I bee-lined to the living room.
Wide-eyed and speechless, I stared. We were livid, fuming, seeing red. Literally. And more specifically, volcanic red. To match the smoke stack from our ears. Just a notch down on the color wheel from barn door red. Except it wasn’t on the wheel. It was on our walls. Again.
We let the smoke and our heads clear before doling out the punishment. Then God rolled out a lesson for me as well just a little while later when our 3-year-old culprit headed for the kitchen, full speed ahead, a girl on another artistic mission.
She slowed down just long enough to lure me in with those blue-grey eyes, mile-long lashes, and with that butter and syrup smile I could sop up with all my mama kisses. I almost did ’til I realized she really was only trying to butter me up.
She fully leveraged all that sugar for a gutsy request. “Mamma, I really, really neeeeed to bring some crayons to my room.” Then as high pitched as her raspy voice could get, she followed with,”Can I have some–pleeease?”
That girl’s got gaul, I’ll give her that. It went from sweet to sour in 30 seconds flat. As I stood at a sink full of dishes, hand on hip, all sweetness of the moment dripped off the plate and it quickly turned into a mean mama moment. I puckered my lips and my no.
“No, you may not. Nope. No way. Not on your life or your little tippy toes will you ever get a crayon again. Well, maybe by 7–IF you’re lucky. Now you look into that living room, do you see those red marks all over that wall? That’s why mommy will NOT give you any more crayons. And don’t ask me again.”
“Ok, Mommy. I’m sawee,” she said as she retreated in defeat. A rare, quiet surrender.
And with my eyes glued to the crayon walls, I heard that still, small voice. God’s truth heaped upon me with dollops of sweet reminders. I’ve got colorful marks and mars all over the walls of my life too.
Yet when I humbly seek Him, He never shoos me away. When I sincerely repent, the equivalent of my little girl’s, “I’m sawee,” He doesn’t point His nail-scarred hand to my mistakes. He points His finger straight to the cross, where He shed His life in the color of crimson for you and me. He forgives, chooses to forget our sins, and only remembers His promise. Then remakes our sinful sketches into His masterpiece–traced in deep, red love and white-as-snow grace.
It’s the picture-perfect, beautiful exchange. So although I wish my girls stayed in the lines, on the paper, and off my living room walls with their crayons, I look at those walls with a whole new view now.
For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. Ephesians 2:10
“I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more.” Isaiah 43:25
“Come now, let us settle the matter,” says the LORD. “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool. Isaiah 1:18
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Song: Beautiful Exchange