Claude Monet, recognized as the Father of Impressionism and the creator of some of the most beautiful paintings ever, still dazzles eyes a century later. I recently had the privilege of visiting his Giverny Gardens…
that inspired many of his most well known paintings…
and his greatest works, “Water Lilies”.
He wrote of his hopes for the paintings:
These landscapes of water and reflection have become my obsession. They are far beyond my old man power and despite everything I
want to succeed in conveying what I feel. I destroy some…I start over again…and I hope something will finally come from so many efforts.”
Yet, at the premier of the enormous collection, Impressionism was no longer as popular with the public as it had previously been. Soon after, the collection fell into anonymity and was not displayed until decades later. Having suffered damage from the war in his Normandy studio, interest and restoration finally began in the 1960’s and was completed in the early 2000’s.
Ignored then, his work is now recognized as some of the finest art on the planet and befitting of it’s own stunning gallery. As I stood in the oval room marveling at the magnificent world renowned display of beauty, I felt an immense sorrow that Monet did not experience in his life the recognition for a job well done.
This is somewhat akin to our efforts in kingdom work. We do what is right over and over; teaching Sunday School, witnessing to family, friends and strangers, cleaning up after church supper, changing diapers in the nursery, showing love to the unlovely, etc., and may not see the “results”.
You may not see the result in this world, but God doesn’t miss the smallest, most anonymous act of service. And one day, because of His great grace, He will allow you to see the beautiful fruition of your prayers, servant acts and kind words that were behind the scenes.
If you’re feeling discouraged that your work has not shown the results for which you’ve been praying, take heart in another who God was clearly and decisively working in and through, despite the evidence shown at the moment…
It’s doubtful that the stand-in layman called upon at the last minute to preach on a snowy Sunday night in London ever knew that the 16 year old boy who responded to the invitation would eventually evangelize hundreds of thousands. That 16 year old was Charles Hadden Spurgeon. From Spurgeon’s biography it is said, “the minister is unknown, though now he knows now how great a deed he did that night.”
Do you feel sometimes like Monet, hoping that something will finally come from so many efforts? Probably all of us do at one time or another. But the good news is that the results are His…one day we shall see them all. And don’t be surprised that at that glorious moment, the act for which you receive the greatest “well done” may be one that you can’t recall.