Sunday, August 1, 2010

Featured Artist: Carrie Leeth

"John 3:16" by Carrie Leeth, copyright

"St. John 18:37" by Carrie Leeth, copyright

"Romans 10:13" by Carrie Leeth, copyright

Carrie Leeth

For two years Carrie carried a vision in her head. It was a simple image, black lines on white paper, a hand and arm scarred by a nail. Repeated attempts to put the image on paper always ended the same, the page containing a single line and nothing more.

In her heart Carrie knew this vision was God's intention for her life. She had always wanted to draw, but felt inadequate as an artist, so she resisted.

A career with Hospice has advanced Carrie's spiritual journey. Since 1996 she has worked with hundreds of dying people. In many, she witnesses the peace they have with God. A single father whose own father was in Hospice care particularly moved her. This man was raising two children and a grandchild, starting a new business, and caring for his dying father. Through the stress and strain of all this, he constantly praised God for his blessings. Carrie wanted that same faith, same belief, to shine through her, so she prayed and asked God to make her a better Christian.

Shortly after the man's father died, Carrie's visions began. "To this end was I born and for this cause I came into the world," Jesus had said. Carrie had a cause - to spread the word of God.

But how? The pen wasn't moving past that first line. Neither was a lead pencil. One day she bought a set of charcoal pencils, with the certain knowledge that it was the proper tool. At home, it took only a couple of charcoal strokes to know this was IT! But the old fears of inadequacy came rushing back, pushing her hand down hard against the table, paralyzing it. "I can't do it," the thought raced through her head and heart. She began praying, crying. Blinded by tears, she felt her hand begin to move across the paper, her first drawing for God coming to life.

It was the beginning of a new path.

Carrie was born in Guntersville, AL and has never lived more than 30 miles from her birthplace. In addition to working for Hospice and creating art, she is a single mother of two daughters and the proud grandmother of three active little boys. She credits her work, God's Gifts to Share, for the many new blessings in her life. With the help of her mother, Chris, Carrie actively participates in art festivals in Alabama and Georgia.

"The drawings help me talk to strangers. I want people to see the love God has for them, to encourage fellow Christians and plant a seed for others," she says.

So it is that she lives her faith: "And He said unto them, Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature." Mark 16:15

Carrie Leeth

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