One of the things I love most about life is that it is full of moments. Beautiful moments and terrible moments, both of which are capable of bringing tears to our eyes. If we are lucky one day we will wake up and find ourselves in a moment that, if we let it, will sweep us off our feet and give us exactly what our heart has been searching for. My last moment like this was back in June when God placed on my heart the call to paint for women everywhere who had been reduced to objects through sex trafficking. Here I am 8 months later in awe of everything that has already happened with Scribbles of Hope. That is the secret about trusting God. We learn that if we are willing to trust Him, He will write a far better story for our lives than we ever could. I was not selling as many paintings as I had originally hoped. Some of my friends and family seemed a little disappointed when I told them this, but I wasn’t. I knew that no amount of money could ever fix the problem, because money can’t fix a heart. But I knew that my art had healed my heart in ways I could not explain, and it was my hope that it could help heal the hearts of others too. Art has a way of affecting us like that. It was been humbling to watch my art affect those who see it. While this was more than I had ever dreamed for Scribbles of Hope, I still felt that something was still missing. I don’t mean to downplay the hurt that is in Sioux Falls because it is there, but I also knew that there were women across the globe who were also hurting. I wanted to give them my art so that they could know that someone cared for them. I had no idea when I woke up this morning that I was going to have another moment that would sweep me off my feet.
The SoHo art is currently on display at the Ransom Church this month. It just so happened that Micah Kephart the Founder of Poetice International in Zambia would be speaking this morning. Poetice International is a multi-facted organization, but one area they target is sexual exploitation. So when I walked into Church and saw Micah talking to someone by a couple of my paintings, something in my soul told me that it wasn’t a coincidence. During the sermon, Micah told us the story of woman named Elena. I was so touched by Elena’s story that I wanted to run to the lobby and grab one of my paintings off of the wall and put it in Micah’s hands to give to Elena. I didn’t though. Instead I waited until the sermon was over to approach Micah. I wanted to give him four paintings, one for Elena and one for each of the three houses they were planning to build.
I was so nervous as I waited to talk to him. My palms were sweating and my pulse was racing. It didn’t help that he kind of looked like Jesus, which was both comforting and intimidating. But I knew it wasn’t that I was nervous to talk to him. I was nervous because I understood the magnitude of what was about to happen. The harder the resistance, the more fear present, the more important the task that is about to happen. When it came time for me to talk to Micah, I expected him to act slightly awkward about this random girl approaching him and her ridiculous idea to have her art travel half way across the world. But he didn’t, not even the least bit. He just listened with all of his attention as I nervously rambled and he said yes without any hesitation. He told me that nothing would mean more to them than to know that someone cared. I excited began to talk to him logistics about getting the paintings to Zambia, and we decided that the Ransom team would just bring them when they went on their yearly trip to Zambia in the November. Then Micah paused. Smiled. Looked me in the eyes and said, “Why don’t you just bring your art to Zambia yourself in November.” I wanted to cry, because I wanted to meet these women, listen to their stories, and be able to tell them that they weren’t broken they were beautiful. And I wanted to be able to give them my art so that they could understand how much I cared for them. But I never dreamed that in only 9 months I could be in Zambia doing exactly that. Like I said, if we let Him, God will write a far better story for our lives than we could ever imagine. And right now he is writing the story of a girl and her art that will travel to the other side of the world to be in the lives of beautiful Zambian women.
Photo courtesy of Poetice International