Watercolour Journey: How I’ve Grown Spiritually at Columbia

Categories: For the Soul, Student Stories

Jodi Enns is in the final year of her BA in Biblical Studies. Jodi first shared these words at Columbia’s Scholarship Celebration Evening, where she was the student speaker.

My time at Columbia has been an incredibly formative, challenging and fulfilling experience. In these years, God has challenged me in the classroom and outside of the classroom. The reoccurring themes that God has challenged me with have been to love people fully, what it means to sacrifice, and acknowledging Jesus as the Saviour of my life, in every aspect.

One of my personal passions and hobbies is watercolour painting, in particular, abstract art and forms. I have found so much freedom being able to lay down paint, watch it flow and move, and allowing it to take form. Through this medium of art, I see a lot of parallels to my spiritual journal and years at Columbia. The best part about watercolour painting is that it is imperfect, and there can be intense beauty in the ‘mistakes’. It requires the artist to loosely lay down water, then add in different colours that blend, and flow within the water laid down. Once the piece dries it can look very different from how it started, and often I go back in and add ink, or marker and refine the shapes to create more meaning.

I have seen these patterns in my spiritual journey. In my first couple years at CBC my spiritual landscape looked like an array of colours and water. Quickly laid down and jumbled together in an attempt to find meaning and direction. There were so many theological truths to wrestle with, identity issues to sort through, and challenges to overcome. These years awarded me incredible joy, close friendships and meaning, but like any abstract painting, they revealed depths in colour I wish I did not need to face. Trials that I wish I could have avoided. I see these years as an array of colours, forms, and from an outside observer, it really looks like a mess, but a beautiful mess.

As my third and fourth year approached, my painting started to dry. Suddenly, forms were beginning to take shape. Foundations to my faith were beginning to settle and evolve. I saw passion and excitement for the Bible and for living a life after Jesus that surpassed any year prior to these years. Like I said before, sometimes when I paint I will return to a dried painting and add ink, marker, or lines to define the shapes and make the images ‘pop’. In these last few years I have seen myself able to surrender, and allow God to be the artist and refine my painting. The Holy Spirit has made themes pop out at me, God has made shapes and images clear and has given me unmistakable vision to what His plans are for me.

As I enter my last year at Columbia, I love reflecting on the painting God has revealed of my spiritual journey. I hope that this year God continues to take control and that he will reveal his masterpiece, and then I will begin a new painting after graduation.

I am so grateful for the memories, the lessons, and the teaching that I have received as a result of this faithful institution. A significant part of my education has been the financial support of generous, faithful believers. Without the encouragement and generosity of all of you, I know that for myself and many others, this education would not be possible. I am beyond grateful for people faithfully donating their time and resources to the spiritual development of young leaders. These awards display that you are passionate about what God is accomplishing through Columbia, and that you are invested in the growth and establishment of a biblical foundation. There are so many students that would not be here if it were not for you, and the faithfully obedient act of worship in your giving. My hope and prayer is that you will be blessed as a result of your generous giving, in the same way that your giving is an incredible blessing to us students. Thank you.