What happened to coloring inside the lines?

By Steve Austin | faith

Mar 19

Raven is one funny kid.
She’s a freshman in high school, about 5′ flat and maybe 100 pounds. But what she lacks in height and weight, she makes up for with tons of personality.

Raven can’t whisper. She’s not bad. She just gets in trouble for being loud. And she has no filter. If she thinks it, she announces it to the world.

Raven is one of my favorites.

Today in Health class, some students had to take the final exam and others did not. Raven (or “Pothole” as we call her) did not have to take the exam, so she sat quietly (shocking) and colored a picture.

I rolled my chair over by her desk and looked at the tree she was coloring.


The green marker she was using had been splattered all over that tree and FAR beyond the lines. “Raven, ever heard of staying inside the lines?” I asked with a giggle.

Her response? “That’s boring.”

I grinned because she had no idea that she’s just written a blog.

There are those of us who create the lines and then there are those who don’t even see the lines. It’s predictable, even easy to stay inside the lines…what takes creativity and guts and whimsy (thank you, Bob Goff) is to look past the lines and have…well…fun.

To many people, the lines are a must. A rule. A requirement. There is no other option. To cross the line is unquestionable and unpardonable.

To others, the lines are simply one person’s perspective–a suggestion. Not a “have to”, and pretty stinkin’ boring!

I want to color outside the lines more often.

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About the Author

Steve Austin is an author, speaker, and life coach who is passionate about helping overwhelmed people learn to catch their breath. He is the author of two Amazon bestsellers, "Catching Your Breath," and "From Pastor to a Psych Ward." Steve lives with his wife and two children in Birmingham, Alabama.

  • coenraadf says:

    I love this. Make life fun, and step outside of the borders society places there for you to stay inside!

  • Gigi says:

    Good for Raven for being a creative! God was and is most certainly the ultimate creative.

  • Braeden says:

    You could say I’ve been trying to “color out of the lines” in my life. I’ve always been slightly shy, and I try to be less shy. There’re probably lot’s of reasons it’ll be better for me not to be shy, but one of the main things I can think of is that I’ll have more friends.However, in actual picture coloring, I think I’ll stick to drawing in the lines.


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