Messages that Stick

During the group time for my preschool class this past Sunday, our director was explaining to the children that 12-year-old Jesus had been left behind at the temple, and His family had traveled toward home without realizing He wasn’t with them. At some point in the story, one of the 4-year-olds asked, “Is this true?”

Ah, the age-old question asked by a young voice. Is what we read in the Bible true? Or more to the point, is it true for us?

There’s an old joke about a Presbyterian minister who took a wrong step at the top of a staircase. He tumbled downward, and when he was at the bottom, he got up and said, “Thank goodness that’s over.”

I have a similar feeling about 2015. Looking at the before-and-after pictures, it’s hard not to wonder if I misread some verses. For starters, can I really get up, pick up my mat and walk? Will I really increase my strength and soar on wings like eagles? Should I really fear not?

A few stresses here and there, and you can loosen your grip on things that sure sounded right at the time. Or maybe it’s more like Scott Peck described: Life is difficult. You can’t get to a certain age and read all the Facebook posts of illness and struggle without seeing that there are bumpy roads everywhere.

Anyway, back in Sunday school, our director, Donna, didn’t miss a beat. She explained that yes, the story is true, and the reason we know it is true is because it is in the Bible. Good teaching moment. She’s awesome that way. I am lucky to be in her class for all these teaching moments.

Moving along here… I gave Donna one of my hand-crafted magnets for Christmas, based on a verse from the Bible. Teacher gift, you know? And getting to the point, this is how I’m telling you about The Nail’s Pace Collection, Phase III. Refrigerator magnets. With messages that stick.

I make notes from time to time about the issues I puzzle through. Over a couple of years, as I was trying to figure out how to be a copywriter with an interest in art, I wrote down this phrase a few times: “paint the messages.” What messages these would be and how to paint them… well, that took a good long while to answer until I started creating The Nail’s Pace Collection. And now the magnets.

Way back when, the first phrase I wanted to paint was “Go forth and fear not.” I’d once heard a speaker use those words in a way that was memorable, and I thought that would be a good message. But those attempts didn’t work out, and I discarded them.

Over time, I came up with a new way of saying that phrase, something that sounded more like me: “Be Not Afraid, Y’all.” And that’s what I’ve put on one of my magnets.

Then I thought about another possible message. Since I have these heart stamps, shouldn’t I say something about love?

Everybody likes love, right? Pretty. Big. Deal. So, in the same style of “Be Not Afraid, Y’all,” I came up with “Loveth One Another, Y’all.”

Oh, and I have one more, sort of in keeping with the phrase “Go forth and fear not.” But I said it this way: “Go out today and be beautifully brave.”20160116_083419_resized

So, those are my messages. Hope they stick.

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