Amanda Barber

Stories, songs, and thoughts on life.

I am currently accepting voice, piano, and violin students. Learn more or

Benjamin, the Artist

02 April 2015

My nephew likes to draw. Quite frequently, he draws me pictures. Last week, he drew these for me:

Do please, pay close attention to the captions he has provided for your further amusement.

Common themes of Benjamin’s art are wars, dinosaurs, dragons and destruction. If I had to guess at Benjamin’s philosophy of life by looking at his drawings it would be something along these lines, “When things are looking bad, they can only get worse.” Or it could be, “It doesn’t matter how big, bad and strong you are, there’s always something bigger, badder and stronger.” Notice how this plays out in the epic dragon attack below. Here’s the little danger:

The bigger danger:

And the bigger, badder danger:

I can guarantee you that the danger stopped there only because Benjamin ran out of room on the paper. What you don’t see is the gargantuan monster lurking above all of this, ready to take out the red dragon with one, big chomp.

He’s a little boy with a big imagination, and like most little boys with big imaginations, the most exciting things in the world are loud explosions and terrifying monsters. Still, as I’ve looked and chuckled over these drawings, I decided there is probably something I can learn from Benjamin’s epic battles.

His monsters remind me of leviathan whom God describes in the book of Job 41. “Canst thou draw out leviathan with an hook? or his tongue with a cord which thou lettest down? Canst thou put an hook into his nose? or bore his jaw through with a thorn? Will he make many supplications unto thee? will he speak soft words unto thee?” Certainly not! He’s a monster. God goes on to describe leviathan, “Who can open the doors of his face? his teeth are terrible round about. His scales are his pride, shut up together as with a close seal. One is so near to another, that no air can come between them. They are joined one to another, they stick together, that they cannot be sundered. By his neesings a light doth shine, and his eyes are like the eyelids of the morning. Out of his mouth go burning lamps, and sparks of fire leap out. Out of his nostrils goeth smoke, as out of a seething pot or caldron. His breath kindleth coals, and a flame goeth out of his mouth.” Sounds kind of like a fire breathing dragon. Yet, there is certainly something much bigger than leviathan.

The author of Psalm 74 tells us who that is, “Thou [God] didst divide the sea by thy strength: thou brakest the heads of the dragons in the waters. Thou brakest the heads of leviathan in pieces, and gavest him to be meat to the people inhabiting the wilderness.”

Just as Benjamin suspects, there is something a lot bigger than the biggest monster out there. You can be big, bad and ugly and there will still be someone bigger and badder and uglier than you are. But God is bigger and stronger than the biggest, baddest monster. And thankfully, He is good.

And by the way, though wars, dinosaurs, dragons and destruction are Benjamin’s chief delight at the moment, he has been known to draw something nice for his aunt on occasion.