It seems like all I've been doing.
I spent a week with stencils and colored pencils,
Tracing vines and flowers,
Gently coloring in.
I'd been trying to recreate nature's beauty on white cardstock,
Trying to imitate God's workmanship with my own imperfect hands.
Obviously, it didn't work very well.
The table has been covered in markers,
Markers pulled out of my colored pencil basket.
Traceable flowers still rest where they fell
And scissors and hole punches have been left where they do not belong.
In the midst of the mess,
Surrounded by chaos,
I tried to imitate beauty.
I stood to sharpen pencils,
Returned to trace lines and bumps,
Wore down the formerly sharp pencils and sharpened them again.
I finally finished,
Finally drew the last swirling vine,
Finally shaded in the last colorful flower.
Then she asked for a poem to go at the end,
Someone's quoted words to finish pages upon pages of pictures and drawings.
It was late, after midnight.
I copied the first section of one of the first poems I found.
It may have been quick, but it was appropriate, true.
I pasted, hit "Print".
I chopped the edges, found a yellow paper, chopped its edges.
Tried one hole punch.
It didn't work.
The paper was too small.
Cut more yellow paper,
Tried a different hole punch.
This one worked.
(Of course, I'd made the paper much bigger this time.)
I found the tape, ran it over the back of the printed paper,
Stuck that paper on the yellow paper,
Ran the tape over the back of the yellow paper,
Stuck the yellow paper on the hand-drawn treasure chest,
Stepped back to admire my work.
It was finished,
All finished (except for one last page that needed to be laminated).
I finished it at 12:30 - A.M.,
But it was finished.
My imperfect recreation,
My attempts at beauty,
Far from perfect,
Far from lifelike,
In their own way,
I wonder if I could learn to see myself like this,
Imperfect but beautiful.
After all, He calls me beautiful.
Maybe I should learn to call myself that, too.
Please teach me.
"Call Me Beautiful" is written and performed by Ginny Owens. Many thanks to this artist for her incredible music.