Tuesday, March 12, 2013

God Speaks Through Play Dough Hearts

More Lessons Learned from SYMC

For all who are struggling. 
Psalm 13

How long, Lord? Will you forget me forever?

    How long will you hide your face from me?

How long must I wrestle with my thoughts

    and day after day have sorrow in my heart?

    How long will my enemy triumph over me?
Look on me and answer, Lord my God.

    Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death,

and my enemy will say, “I have overcome him,

    and my foes will rejoice when I fall.

But I trust in your unfailing love;

    my heart rejoices in your salvation.

I will sing the Lord’s praise,

    for he has been good to me.

In the darkness, with only the stage lights filtering between the seats, I fumbled for the small container of play dough that the speaker, Jason Ostrander, assured us would be there.

“Where are you at with God? If you were to mold the play dough into a symbol of where you are at in life right now, what would it look like? Take some time and let God speak to you on this...”

So there I sat in the darkness of the conference session. Squishing the soft malleable substance in my hands...

I settled in, quieted my mind, and listened to the speakers...

Before long I had made my first sculpture.

This was how I have felt this last year.
Like Jesus and His cross had broken my heart wide open so that it was spilling out...

It symbolized a year of Jesus turning my world upside down. 

Then, John Stumbo began sharing about a vision God had given him.

After a year of pain and agony due to a debilitating and unexplained illness, God revealed this vision to him...

He saw the clay formed and molded still spinning wet on the potters wheel...

Then He saw the potters hands reach down and crush the pot back down into a lump on the wheel, only to begin to mold it again.

God? Are you starting over with me?

God whispered back,

This heart cracked open and bleeding? It's not the complete picture. I have a better design.

So reluctantly, I squished the hot pink play dough I had so carefully constructed back into an ugly lump and waited with one question on my breath...

What is it You want to show me, Father?

Slowly, in the quiet, the Lord prodded me to place this silly misshapen ball of play dough into my left hand and to close my right hand over it.

I waited there with my hands closed around the dough in prayer...

I felt the dough in my hands begin to grow warm, molding into the spaces and crevices of my palms.

His voice came into my thoughts,

I am Holding you my dear child.
I am holding you.
My veins my finger prints, my wounds are impressed upon you...
Just stay here, while I hold you.

Warm salty tears began to fall as His words sank in.

I love you, I am not done with you my child. Open your hands and see.

I was fascinated by what I saw.
There in my hands was a heart, but not like the one I had molded earlier. The one we have so commercialized on cards, posters, t-shirts...
This looked more like a real heart.

He whispered,

You see I am not done with you yet.
This represents my heart. A real beating heart for a life that is not over yet.

A life that needs to be lived now.

This is My design. So much more complex and amazing.

The blood flows out, but it also constantly being fed again. It continues to beat and flow, beat and flow,
 bringing LIFE to the rest of the body."

I looked at the play dough heart...the crevices and lines of my palms had created veins that are pathways of life.

"My ways are not yours my daughter...My ways are not yours, but I am not done with recreating you yet.

I took your heart that was broken for Me and have given you Mine instead.

Are you there friends?
Are you unsure of the path that the Lord has been taking you on?
Have you surrendered your heart to His amazing and capable hands?

My goal is that you may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that you may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that you may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

Colossians 2:2-3

To hear John Stumbo's amazing story you can click here.
John Stumbo: The Deeper Life in Jesus
part 1 ,  part 2 , part 3 , part 4

Need some praise time?
The heartbeat of my life is to worship in Your light...


  1. Love this! What a beautiful illustration.

  2. Thank you Natasha! I am so grateful God gave me this reminder. I needed to remember that His design is so much better than mine.
    p.s. I read your blog every week. It is such a blessing to me!

  3. Heather, I love, love, love this! It really touched me and spoke volumes to the broken areas of my own heart. Thank you. Xoxoxo.

    1. I am so very grateful that our Daddy in heaven is using it! Thank you for letting me know. :)

  4. Heather,
    This is beautiful - just beautiful. I tweeted it for next Sunday @authorjaniscox. And I hope that you will link this post to Wednesday's Word this week. Just an awesome post.
    Janis www.janiscox.com

    1. Thank you for this encouragement Janis. I hopped on over to your blog and really enjoyed it. I love the Arts! (I used to be an art teacher) I love your use of colors for Tadeo the turtle. And I will definitely try and remember to head over on Wednesday. Thank you again for your words and for the invite to join your link up. :)

  5. what a very powerful post. Thank you for stopping by my blog and for sharing your words of inspiration here on yours.