The Gift of a Blank Canvas

In a way, life is a lot like art—each moment a blank canvas waiting to be painted on. How we move, how we act, how we choose to live and express ourselves will determine how the finished product turns out. Think of your life like a gallery of your very own artwork—a collection of moments, an exhibit of finished canvases. There will be some great ones, ones you’re really proud of, and there will be some not so great ones. Hopefully, though, the not so great ones will end up being some of your greatest learning experiences—“practice” canvases that prepare you for your greatest moments, your greatest works of art.

The problem is this: not everyone is able to see a moment for what it is— a clean slate, a new beginning. They carry over the baggage from the past with them, and it gives birth to bitterness, doubt, fear. The irony is that when we live to forget, we remember who we truly are. We must allow ourselves to feel pain temporarily and then move through it, returning to our innocence—that version of ourselves who has faith, believes, sees the good in people and in life itself.

As I sat on my couch staring at the blank canvas in front of me, I wasn’t intimidated. I didn’t take into consideration how many canvases I’d messed up in the past. I wasn’t comparing my canvas to anyone else’s canvas, either. I simply put the paint brush to the board and began to move it around.

This got me thinking. How often do we let past experiences and comparison impact our now experiences? How often do we let fear of making mistakes, fear of the future restrict our movement in our current reality? As humans, it’s easy to get caught up in time and forget that all we really have is right now. It’s easy to forget that each moment is a gift, a blank canvas waiting for pure, unadulterated life to move over it. When we learn to let go of what was, to stop worrying about what will be, and embrace what is, we learn that anything is possible.

I’m here today to tell you that you have the choice, the power to let go of the past—of the trauma, the pain, the anger, the sadness—and focus on the canvas in front of you. You have the power to refuse to let fear and doubt influence your artwork, allowing God to lead you. After all, you’re the artist of your own life.

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