“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.” Eph. 2:10 (NLT)
I shifted uncomfortably on the wrought-iron bench and stared down at the ground. My folded hands tightened in a squeeze in an effort to suppress an avalanche of emotions. Gray, ominous clouds mimicked my soul as they slithered across the sky.
“Whatcha doin?” The bench jostled as the bubbly little girl plopped herself down beside me. I swallowed hard, keeping my gaze to the ground.
“Um, hello.” Please don’t expect me to talk to you, little girl. The weight of my problems felt like a cement brick lay upon my chest. I just wasn’t up for conversation.
A tiny hand tugged at the sleeve of my sweater. “What’s your name? My name’s Suzie. My daddy calls me Suzie-Q. I’m five years old and I’m a kinder-gardner. I like to dance, and play barbies, but I really love to draw. Drawing’s my favorite.” Luckily, her continuous ranting got me off the hook of having to respond. I just listened.
“Look.” She swiped at my sweater. I turned my face slightly in her direction as she forcefully folded her blonde curls behind her ears.
“Let me show you my special box.” She buried her hand inside the nylon pocket of her pink, polka-dot backpack and gingerly pulled out a tin box. I had to admit, a wave of intrigue swept over me. It was difficult to ignore this interesting little person. My forehead wrinkled as I looked up to ascertain who was watching over Suzie-Q.
“Suzie, is that your daddy over there?” I threw my chin upward, glancing at a young man on the phone, aimlessly walking in circles.
“Yep, that’s him.” Suzie shot a glimpse toward her daddy and jerked her head back to me. “He’s always on the phone. He likes to take me to the park for walks, but he just talks on the phone.” A slight twinge of pain pricked my heart.
“Now, look at my special box, see?” She shoved the small, tin box into my hands, forcing me to take a closer look. I surveyed the dull, dusty blue box adorned with a painted assortment of delicate, white flowers. Numerous scratches indicated it was obviously time-worn and treasured.
“It’s very nice,” I said, politely placing the box back into her small hands. Mustering up a weak smile, I cleared my throat.
“So, Miss Suzie–why is your box so special?” Suzie wriggled in her seat; her face beaming from ear to ear upon my asking.
“Wellll, because of what’s inside. Look!” She held the box tight in one hand while she yanked the tin lid open with the other. I look down into the tin box, only to see a scattered pile of misfit, broken colored crayons. The crayons varied in every imaginable shade of color. Many had been snapped into two or three pieces, and some no longer wore their paper coat.
I released a quick breath, knowing she was waiting for me to ask the next question.
“Now Suzie–just why do you think these crayons are so special?” They certainly didn’t appear to be anything special to me.
“Because.” She slapped her hand to her forehead, indicating that I should’ve known exactly why. “That’s how all the magic happens.” Of course–why didn’t I think of that? Silly little girl.
“I’m gonna draw you a picture!” She chirped. A sketch pad emerged from the backpack and I watched as she meticulously chose a selection of crayons. Whatever floats your boat, kid.
Turning my face forward, I dropped my eyes to the ground once again. As Suzie began to color with unparalleled fervor, I was once more alone with my thoughts. My dismal, heartbreaking thoughts. A breath caught in my chest and I shut my eyes against hot tears. Troubling words had been spoken. Difficult decisions were made. Relationships shattered. Circumstances changed. Oh, how life can be altered in a matter of days–moments even.
My weary bones ached. I was rendered helpless. I was broken.
The scratching of crayon scraping against paper jolted me back to the present moment. I turned my gaze to the little girl feverishly scribbling beside me. My breath halted for a split second as my eyes widened. I leaned in for closer inspection of Suzie’s work in progress. It was–astonishing.
Suzie giggled once she discovered I was watching. “Almost finished!”
I was dumbfounded, and bewildered. I saw before me bold splashes of color forming what appeared to be a giant sun, with clearly defined, illuminating rays outstretched from all directions, as if reaching for an embrace. Seemingly simple, yet the design and color left me amazed. Never had I witnessed anything more beautiful.
“Ta-da! Here’s my masterpiece!” She proudly held up her sketch pad in front of my face.
“Why Miss Suzie, this truly is a masterpiece.”
Instant thoughts flashed to my childhood. I recalled the calming sound of my father’s gentle voice, reminding me. You will always be God’s masterpiece, and don’t you forget it. From within the deep recesses of my mind emerged a Bible verse:
“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.”
“Here–my masterpiece is for you!” Suzie tore the page from her sketch pad and thrust her work of art into my hands. I blinked back tears.
“Oh Suzie, thank you.” Suzie’s daddy gave a sudden clap of his hands. She took both her hands and swiped the curls from her face. Scrambling to her feet, she shoved the sketch pad and tin box into her backpack. Our eyes met and she blew me a kiss before skipping away.
My gaze fixed on the masterpiece in my hands. Tears puddled between my eyes as my spirit gently whispered.
Broken crayons still color.
License: <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/”>(license)</a>
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