Tuesday, March 24, 2015

What's Your Whale, And How Are You Using It To Serve God?

This is the reprint of an article, minus one illustration, that was originally posted with two images to my non-profit ministry blog on May 23rd, 2014. Please read the article, and then read the commentary underneath it explaining why I deleted the original article and am reprinting it here to see the ironic twist behind my actions.

Mar 24, 2015

ORIGINAL SHORT ARTICLE:
What's Your Whale, And How Are You Using It To Serve God?

I feel like Jonah sometimes...

But sometimes, if it leads you to do God's will, being swallowed by a whale can be a good thing!

Do you want to know why? Take my life as an example, because - even though God put me on this Earth to minister to others with my love and devotion to Him - all I want to do most of the time is run away and hide because so many people are ugly inside.

In the past, before I left home, I would hide in my bedroom (my allegorical "whale!") and draw and paint and write poetry all day and night for weeks at times - until I felt a renewed need for human companionship. Then I would grudgingly leave that whale-like sanctuary to face the world's ugliness again, hoping to find some rays of sunshine, warmth and love out there somewhere - although, sadly, I rarely did.

Before the Internet, I drew pictures and wrote poems, articles and books to escape, but had no one really to share them with. But now with the Internet, I find such joy and peace (even though, it too can sometimes be marred by ugliness) in ministering to others online to escape this Hell I live in, and - ironically - I am accomplishing God's will for my life through my escapism!

So don't tell me God doesn't have a sense of humor! :-D

Now tell me, what's your whale, and how are you using it to serve God?

Love and Blessings,
Helena Lehman of the
Pillar of Enoch Ministry
http://pillar-of-enoch.com

NOW, PLEASE CONTINUE READING 
BELOW FOR THE MORAL OF THIS STORY...

The single illustration now being used in this article is not my own. I found it doing a Google search and - as far as I know - it is a photo of a generic paint by number painting, and I have no idea if a commercial artist painted it, or if it is copyrighted or not. So if it is and you are the artist, please write and let me know, and I will immediately remove it and replace it with one of my own drawings, as I am an artist too, and can do some great artwork if I apply myself to it.

Now, the reason why I felt that the original article had to be deleted and re-published was due to the use of another illustration not shown here, which I had to remove. The commercial artist Giovaninna Colalillo discovered that I had used this image, and objected to my unauthorized use if it. It depicted her lovely "Jonah and the Whale" artwork, which I did not know was hers, having been copied from a Google web search for images just like the other one still in this article.

Objecting to my use of her work, that image had to be deleted from my blog. After this said artist contacted me the first time for using her art image several months ago, I wrote her back apologizing for not giving her credit, and telling her that I did not know it was hers, and had since then put her name and a link to her web site under the image into my non-profit ministry blog post. I also asked if this would serve to appease her ire, or if she still wanted me to remove the image.

Months later, on April 29th, 2015, I received a threatening e-mail from the artist telling me that she was going to bill me for the use of her copyrighted artwork and I had no right to use it without paying for use. Rather surprised at this, I immediately deleted the image from the short blog article post it had been attached to and wrote the artist that I had done so.

I also shortly after decided to delete the whole post, re-publishing it with an account of this incident because it can serve as an illustration of what I was writing about in the short article in the first place! Here are two direct quotes from the original article above that helps to illustrate why I withdrew from society:

"Even though God put me on this Earth to minister to others with my love and devotion to Him - all I want to do most of the time is run away and hide because so many people are ugly inside." and

"with the Internet, I find such joy and peace (even though, it too can sometimes be marred by ugliness) in ministering to others online to escape this Hell I live in..."

You see, even though I found some solace from loneliness sharing my ideas online, I have also received much ugliness in return for my acts of love. This has played out in the once constant barrage of hateful comments left under my posts at Facebook and on many outside Religious discussion forums that I have since been banned from. Those hateful comments often had nothing to do with any artwork but my own, and were really direct attacks on what I had written. The once steady stream of hate mail flooding my e-mail box on a nearly daily basis at one time was also generated by haters reacting to my ministry articles.

Thankfully, this barrage of hatefulness is not happening as much these days because I withdrew from thew world again in 2013. In that year, I began to post my work only on Facebook, my ministry blog, and on my own Pillar of Enoch Ministry web site. So now I only have to deal with the majority of my detractors on Facebook, where they can easily be blocked.

But, although this phenomenon of getting attacked when trying to do good has died down, this particular incident makes my original article's point all that much more ironic because another artist misinterpreted what was only intended to bless others without hope of profit.

I thought that this was especially ironic because it centered around a rather flamboyant, colorful and child-like depiction of a whale in the act of swallowing Jonah, a man who disobeyed God and hated the Ninevites so much he didn't want to bless them or share the truth with them.

For a while I felt a lot like Jonah. I hated everyone and didn't care whether they perished or not. Thank God that - with Yahshua and the Holy Spirit's help and guidance - my attitude finally changed. Whether it's for the better of not, you decide.

Love and Blessings,
Helena


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