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The Canvas of Life by Emily Chapman

The early morning sun peered in through the small opening in the bedroom curtains. She had been awake for several hours just lying in bed meditating on the fact that this truly was the first day of the rest of her life. As an artist she often woke early and spent time mentally planning her day's work, mostly how she would go about repairing the mistakes she had made the day before.. Today, however, was different from any other; the night before she had surrendered her life to the master. For years she had struggled with her artistic endeavors, never able to achieve a sense of satisfaction. Her lines lacked fluidity and organization and her composition screamed of chaos. The color was never right either, always too dark and murky just like her life. This morning she would try again. As she stepped into her studio she was stunned by the fact that the painting she had begun was gone. In its place hung a pure, clean canvas awaiting her touch. She leapt to her brushes and immediately began to paint, only vaguely aware of the master's voice whispering, "Wait for me." She painted feverishly for hours and then collapsed. Only after she rested did she dare step back to really study what she had painted that day. What she discovered was that her painting was no longer dark, in fact it sparkled with a brilliance she had never known before but the lines were still just as disjointed as ever sprawling out and interrupting the intent of her creation. Without a thought she did exactly as she had so many times in the past and returned to her canvas. She recomposed and repainted over and over again but no matter how hard she tried she could not make it right. By now the canvas was so full of smudges and blobs she could no longer bear it and she began to sob. It was then that she remembered the still, small voice that had asked her to wait for him. Through her tears she fell on her knees in repentance, telling the master how sorry she was and begging for his forgiveness. At that moment the artist experienced an indescribable peace and her eyes were drawn to her canvas where only the beauty remained; the areas of jumbled paint on top of paint had been replaced with clean white canvas once again. All her mistakes had been lifted out so perfectly it was as though they had never existed. She thanked the master for her new life and so began their walk together. In the twilight of her life, the artist spent many hours of pleasure recalling the many works she and the master had completed together. She could so easily see all the times they had painted together. They were truly masterpieces! Sadly, she could also identify the times that she had hurried ahead of him and all the empty spots where she had failed to paint where he asked her to but she knew that even in her imperfection he loved her and she loved him and nothing could ever change that.

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