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Prayer Column - October 2021

Works in progress

I’m a member of a national art society for all artists, amateur and professional, and they hold an ‘Artist of the Year’ challenge. During lockdown I entered some of my drawings, and to my surprise one got through to the second round of judging. Encouraged, I had another go this year, and again one did well – but another made it to the finals! They tell you this weeks before the winners are selected, and I couldn’t help imagining what it might be like to stand on the podium.

But then reality began to whisper. I would have to get the thing framed in a hurry, and take it to the exhibition for a week a hundred miles away, just when we’d booked a holiday. And frankly the prize and kudos wouldn’t really matter to me, whereas it might be a real benefit to someone else. So, fun though the experience would doubtless have been, it was not without relief when I heard I was an also-ran.

What a contrast all this is with being a Christian, where the works of art are us – being created by the master Artist according to his design. There is no competition: the inclusion of one never excludes another. We are always only a work in progress in this world, but from the very start we are on display for all to see, as the Lord progressively develops us with all his creative skills – and, it must be said, on rather unpromising and often uncooperative material. But there is one great similarity: the artist gets a huge kick when others admire his working and want to join in. Isn’t that an encouragement to pray along with the Lord as he reshapes us into the image of God?

Roy Lorrain-Smith

A prayer for each week

Great God, Author of all, conceiving and planning Project Creation in all its atoms, please help us find and follow your plans for us, through Jesus. Amen.

Great God, inventor of all things, with space to position them and time to fix their order, may we find our place and keep to your times, in Jesus. Amen.

Great God, Artist of all colour, giving rich character to the detail of your creation, may we find our true natures in Jesus, and live them out for you. Amen.

Great God, Sculptor of forms, shaping all according to your design, may we be willing clay in your hands, to make us into whatever you choose. Amen.

Great God, Creator of ideas and visions, may we catch the vision for all the works of your hands, and put your ideas into practice, through Jesus. Amen.

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