Joni's Art

  • Sept. 17, 2018
  • #9491

We often take credit for our accomplishments, but it is the Lord who is guiding us and directing our path.

Hi, I’m Joni Eareckson Tada with a story about my Daddy and my art.

As you probably know, for years I have painted holding brushes between my teeth. It’s not the way I’ve always rendered drawings and paintings, but you know how it is; my diving accident and broken neck definitely changed the way I handled everything, including brushes. But back before my wheelchair, when I was very young, I gained such a love of drawing and painting from my Daddy. Now he was not a professional artist, but painting was his favorite hobby. Often after dinner, Daddy would retire to his desk, pull out his big wooden paint box from underneath, squirt colorful oils on his palette, soften his brushes, adjust the desk lamp, and oh my goodness, he would paint the most wonderful things; daddy got lots of his ideas from National Geographic. If there were an article about the Indians of the plains, he’d find old photographs of them hunting buffalo or sitting around their tepees and lodges. For him, these photos were wonderfully inspiring and, before long, I’d see him sketching a design, dampen his brushes with gel, and painting the most stunning portraits and landscapes.

In fact, I’ve posted a video today on that highlights some of my father’s own paintings and I would love for you to see. After this, just go to to take a look—but back to my point. Often when Daddy painted in the evening, I would sit there pulling out my crayons and coloring book and I’d be on the floor next to him, coloring Roy Rogers or Gene Autry and their horses. Sometimes Daddy would invite me to sit up on his lap where he would enfold his big hand over mine, and together we would swirl the colors across his canvas, painting mountains and horses and Indians. I felt like I was the one creating these huge renderings, but now of course, years later, I look back and it was Daddy’s hand all along guiding mine. I tell you what, Daddy sure made me feel like I was the one making the painting!

And isn’t that just the way our Heavenly Father guides us? Like a child, we often assume it is we who are doing God’s work; it’s our efforts that have made a church event successful; or it is we who are making it happen. But all the time it’s the Lord working through us, just as though his hand were enveloping ours: moving, guiding, creating, and working out His will. Psalm 73 says, “Nevertheless I am continually with You; God, You have taken hold of my right hand. With Your counsel You will guide me, And afterward receive me to glory.” What a beautiful verse that underscores how God takes hold of our hands and counsels and guides us. And when we yield to Him, great things are accomplished and even greater things when we give Him the glory, rather than seek it for ourselves.

So please, don’t forget to stop by today to take a quick look at not only my Daddy’s paintings, but to watch me at work at my easel. And while you’re there, I want you to help me celebrate the gift of painting that I inherited not only from my earthly dad, but my heavenly Father. I want to give you a free gift of a box of my photo-insert Christmas cards. It’s one of my favorite Christmas designs that has a place you can insert a family photo. And I would be honored if you would use these cards this Christmas season to celebrate the birth of Jesus with your friends. The free gift is yours for the asking at By the way, I would love to hear what you are praying about or a favorite Bible verse that you are memorizing. Tell me about it. Just go to my radio page today at or you can always write me at Joni and Friends, Post Office Box 3333, Agoura Hills, CA 91376.

© Joni and Friends



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