“But I might color outside the lines….”



Brynlee has a life-sized outline of herself hanging on her bedroom wall. Her K3 teacher made the outline a couple months ago, and it immediately became a new decoration in her room. Today we were coloring on the picture, and I asked her if she wanted to add some flowers to the bottom of the page. (Now keep in mind, I am a horrible artist!! I have a rough draft for a children’s book called Stick People and Crooked Hearts based loosely on a younger artistically challenged version of me.) When I asked Brynlee about drawing flowers, she shut me down and said she didn’t know how. So, to save the day as moms always do, I offered to draw the flowers and let her color them. She quickly replied, “But I might color outside the lines!”

How can she be so much like me?!

Anyone who knows me well knows that I am a play by the rules, by the book, typical overachiever. If I’m not good at something, I pout. If I have no chance of winning, I’m probably not going to play. In my entire high school career, I skipped school twice. I cheated on one test in fourth grade and was convinced that my mom knew and would be flying into my classroom in 3.4 seconds to drag me up to the teacher. Granted, I am FAR from perfect, which Jason can and will attest to, but I cannot stand to bad at anything! And now, I hear that same voice coming out of my four year old’s mouth……

“But I might color outside the lines.” What did I tell her, you might ask? “Who cares?! We’re just having fun!!” But could I really take that advise?

What really might happen if I color outside the lines in my life? What if I try something and fall flat on my face? Will the world fall off its axis? Not likely. Will God fall off the throne? No way! Will my family laugh at me? Most definitely, but only because they have seen me trip over my own two feet 579 times this year. And once they contain their laughter, they will hug me and assure me everything will be okay!

A simple conversation with an adorable four year old really has me thinking, “what would happen if I color outside the lines?”  What plan does God have for me (and Jason) that might take coloring outside the lines to see HIS plan completed? So, my prayer tonight is this: “God, show us what You have for us, and the way You’ve chosen for us to take! Even if it takes a little coloring outside the lines and risk taking.”

I just might have to take a deep breath, count to ten and scribble right over the lines.


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