Life in Monochrome

“I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10)

Close your eyes for a moment, and try to imagine your surroundings in black and white. If it’s hard to do, think of the movie, “The Wizard of Oz.” Remember how it begins, on the farm? All is cast in shades of gray, reflecting the hardships of life in the Depression. But when Dorothy and Toto arrive in the Land of Oz, the sudden switch to technicolor is stunning.

Here in the Canadian prairies we’re into our monochrome period. The snow is melting and no longer white and sparkling. Mud, and drab patches of grass are making an appearance. But I’m longing to see the fullness of life that spring brings, trees leafing, a carpet of green around our home, and flowers appearing in various shades.

Reading verses such as the one above, I sometimes think I’ll have to wait for heaven to experience abundant life. There, we who belong to Him will be perfectly fulfilled and content. But how can I have what Jesus talks about, when physical and mental limitations confront me every single day? Sometimes, it seems I live life in monochrome.

The fullest experience of God’s abundance is impossible in this fallen world. However, I believe we can have a wonderful foretaste of it. As the Lord revives our spirits, we’re able to walk, day by day, in fellowship with Him. Then we see things differently.

George Robinson’s hymn, Loved with Everlasting Love, expresses it well. In the warmth of God’s love, “Heaven above is softer blue, / Earth around is sweeter green- / Something lives in every hue, / Christless eyes have never seen. Birds with gladder songs o’erflow, / Flowers with deeper beauties shine, / Since I know, as now I know, / I am His, and He is mine.”

Friends, when the pain is bad, we often see only dismal grays. But my prayer is that faith in our loving Father will bring a touch of heaven’s radiance, giving us renewed hope and joy. Hope and joy that not only fill us, but spill over to others.

Prayer: God, all around us we can find beauty in things if we look carefully and with eagerness to see You in our surroundings. Teach us to not live in the black and white, even when our lives seem dull, but to seek out the colors that you give us each day through the joy in You.

About the Author:
Beth Cottrill lives in a small town in rural Saskatchewan, Canada, with her retired pastor/teacher husband, Bob, an avid football fan. She finds living with Attention Deficit Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, depression, osteo-arthritis and a stroke of several years ago a challenge, but also training for a ministry to others. She loves nature, animals, music, making cards and, last but not least, being a grandma.

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2 thoughts on “Life in Monochrome

  1. Beth, this is a glorious devotional. You paint with your words a reality that we all have experienced. Our physical and emotional challenges often color our world or “de-color” it.

    This is a timely devotional as we are now in Holy Week and our reflections are on the harsh realities that Christ bore for each one of us. He brought the sun of a new day, New Life that we can now experience if only in part compared to the heavenly time that awaits us.

    I too want to see the glories He gives to me now. You remind me to be more intentional in looking for them. Thanks so much!


  2. Beth,

    I can identify with what you wrote here, having been in a “monochrome” season the last couple of months. I think as in other periods of my life, I’ve had to go on believing that the colour would come back, even when it may have felt I would never get out of the black & white.

    As Lynn said, I need to be more intentional in looking for the colour – because it’s still always there.

    Bless you for sharing,

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