Updated: May 8
Around 2014, I was a young mom with young kiddos. Like many one income-homeschool families money was tight as we made sacrifices to keep me at home with the kids. During our engagement, my husband Paul committed to me that I would never have to work a day in our marriage unless I wanted to. We agreed that I would stay home and homeschool. I was not at all desiring to get a job or be out of the home. I did, however, want to earn some extra money to bless my man who had so faithfully provided for us. A friend saw my chalk board with scripture on it and suggested that I do the same thing but with paint and canvas. She was confident that people would want to pay me to have one of these canvases. I was skeptical, but Paul and I prayed about it and decided that I would give it a go. I acquired a few supplies and went for it with much trepidation.
It was completely shocking and delightful that people bought my paintings! I had never considered myself an artist but always loved words and typography. Prior to painting on canvas, I would take artistic notes during a sermon to help the truth sink in better.
As I began to paint on canvas, I realized I should name this endeavor and get a business license. Abide Scripts was born. I painted and sold for one year. At the end of that year Paul and I sat down and evaluated the money made and the toll taken on the family. It cost too much. I am not naturally administrative and greatly admire those who are. The deadlines and business end of things was just too much for me to juggle in that season. I would be scripting, "Be still and know that I am God," while screaming, "don't hit your sister," instead of walking over to the altercation and parenting. This was not the vision God had given me for this work. During that same conversation my husband said, "why don't you just give your paintings away. I provide for our family so you don't have to make money and you could just enjoy it without deadlines." It was like I had been set free! I loved the idea. It took some time to figure out how to do it but once we did it all took off. I would tell people as long as I have supplies the canvases are free. If you give me money it will go towards giving away paintings to others.
I was honored to see thousands of paintings claimed and freely given as encouragement. I was able to pray with people and over people as they told me stories of pain and victory. Paint and blank canvases would show up on our doorstep allowing me to continue. My skills grew and I engaged WITH the Lord while I painted, which was His plan all along.