*I dreamt of a canvas, he said.

We were late to the show because of volunteer responsibilities, so I missed the introduction. I didn’t know who this young man and his accompanist were.

But I recognized the story he told.

He spoke of the accidental death of his little sister, and the pain his family walked through after. And how they didn’t understand.

I dreamt of a canvas, he said. And the canvas was so big and we were so close to it that we couldn’t make out the details. I realized that if I backed away a little, I could see more clearly. But I couldn’t get far enough away to see the entire thing…I still don’t understand, but I know that one day, we’ll be in heaven and we’ll be able to see the whole picture.

I still didn’t know the young man’s name. But I knew who he was.

We watched the show. Sang along with Tenth Avenue North. Belted out the hits with Casting Crowns.

During intermission, we did the work for WorldVision that we came to do.

It was a busy night.

But through it all, I couldn’t forget the story about the canvas.

I could use a better view of so many things.

So I googled. And in my sleuthing, I cried tears anew for Maria Sue.

Oh, how this little girl and her family have taught us about faith, and grace, and love!

If you get the chance to go see Caleb and Will Chapman, I highly recommend that you go. The foundation of faith given to these young men by their family is evident in their music, in their words, and in their prayers.

Caleb and Will, April 16, 2010

*These are the words I heard Caleb speak. They are a paraphrase of his message. I did not have the chance to record his exact words.


  1. says


    What a beautiful testimony. We saw Caleb/Tenth Ave. North/Casting Crowns in Sioux Falls, SD, a couple weeks ago and heard the same testimony there.

    I didn’t realize those were the Chapman boys until he began to share the story of a “family tragedy” involving his little sister. He handled it with such poise and grace.

    Wasn’t it an amazing concert?

  2. says

    oh how my heart aches for that family…it does now as it did then, when it first happend. It is to the greatest praise of God how they have all testified to His healing power through lives lived in pure raw faith.

  3. says

    I remember when this had happened. I cried then, and I cry now, every single time I hear about it. That family, but particularly that boy has been through so much. God bless him and God bless them.

  4. says

    We’ve had that same thing happen to two families around us….32 years later one would say that canvas is still a blur. I know in all of our lives God is redeeming those “ugly” moments until we see Him face to face….and then it will be complete. I’ve been reading their blogs for quite a while, even before her death…God at work, God is God….Proof of our mighty Father that some are functioning and alive after “life” happened. He is able.

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