Introducing: Mr. Samuel

My goal as a Christian artist is to capture faith-filled moments in clay that evoke positive emotions and gentle remembrance of a person whose faith touched the lives of those whose paths they crossed, even if momentarily.  This piece captures one brief moment in clay of the spirit of gratitude for one of life’s simple gifts such as a plentiful harvest and a heart’s desire to give thanks.  

Growing up in the mid-west, my family’s garden was a place where my parents spent a large portion of their evening hours tending rows of various greens and tomatoes, which often graced our table.  Having been smitten by the same desire of generating life from seed, I understand the intense joy of harvesting its resulting fruit from the earth’s womb.

So, I’m thanking You with all my heart, with gratitude for all You’ve done. — Psalm 56:12

In my mind, this verse speaks to a life of continuous gratitude from the greatest of acts to the simplest of joys such as reaping a plentiful harvest of sweet potatoes.   Mr. Samuel’s sinewy frame and weather-worn face speak to the many years of partnership between him, the seed and the earth’s unyielding black rich soil.  Specifically, it highlights the spirit of offering the first fruits of any gift, blessing  or harvest back to our Father in thanks. In light of this, Mr. Samuel holds outwards the best of his harvest to be given to others for their table’s bounty.

I hope Mr. Samuel’s smile inspires each of you to give thanks and offer your first fruits (both great and small) as a blessing to others as a means of thanks. 

Feel free to share your thoughts on your life’s journeys in the comments section below. I look forward to hearing from you.

Mr. Samuel has found his forever home and is no longer available for purchase.

14 Comments

  • Kim Foulkes

    I absolutely LOVE Mr Samuel. I purchased him for my daughter’s 31st birthday. She saw him on this website and fell in love. She is a wonderful gardener and her grandparents are farmers so it really touched her heart. It’s been my favorite gift yet that I’ve ever given her. He is remarkable, the details are so life like. The expression of thankfulness is beautiful. I love every detail and even down to his jeans. There was such care in the mailing and packaging to keep him safe and secure, and even instructions how to safely remove him. I am so impressed with the entire process! I will most definitely purchase again! May God bless you Jackie, and everything you touch! Sincerely, Kim

  • Alice Arment

    Jackie Darling I love love love all of this. And I have so loved watching the journey unfold from your pieces. It is mind blowing the absolute detail you put into every nook and cranny of your pieces! They are exquisite old soul characters, that dare to show their heart connection with their creator! Love the name “De Lawd ‘n’ Me” From all you’ve share with me, it’s perfect! Can not wait to see your next piece unfold and share more of our journey’s together. Love you friend!

    • JackieD

      Alice, you expressed it so eloquently when you stated that my pieces represent old souls that dare to show their heart connection with their creator! Thank you so much for your encouragement, wisdom, and friendship. I, too, look forward to what the Father will have me create next!

  • Tee

    Mr. Samuel is all the men in my small rural community where I grew up. Always outside, hoe or rake in hand, tending to their garden. This piece brings back so many fond memories of a time when life was a bit slower, caring was more abundant and people shared the fruits of their planting. Your detail in every piece is exquisite- your gift is extraordinary and inspiring. Thank you for sharing it with the world.

    • JackieD

      It was a joy sharing the journey of Mr. Samuel’s creation with you. Your encouragement and love inspired me to give my best for His glory. You’re a blessing to me.

      • Chelsey Bozarth

        I was surprised by my mom with an early birthday present of Mr. Samuel !! I fell in love with him the moment I saw him. I, too, love to garden and he is just so beautiful! He made it safely home! He was packed very securely with packing peanuts and foam! Jackie is a very talented artist!!

        • JackieD

          Thank you, Chelsey. I am so honored that you are the owner of this piece. I appreciate your encouragement and welcome you to the blog! Please feel free to stop by anytime to post a comment or thought. I’ll be looking for you! 🙂

  • Tanisha Marshall

    Hi Jackie,

    I love your sculptures. I can see that you have taken a great deal of time to sculpt Mr. Samuel. He has worked hard most of his life but yet he is grateful for what God provided.

    • JackieD

      Thank you, Tanisha. I have enjoyed sharing the journey of Mr. Samuel’s creation with you. Thank you for the encouragement and words of wisdom.

    • Cegies

      Hey Jackie!
      What a joy it is to see you using and sharing your God given gifts and talents……you are walking in your purpose! I love it that you are showing every sermon doesn’t come from a pulpit. There are so many ways to introduce and share Christ with people and you, my dear, are doing just that! Mr. Samuel’s eyes radiate years of “Looking into Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith..” and his facial expression exudes so much gratitude. Mr. Samuel through his simple act of growing sweet potatos brings Col. 3:17 alive! “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” JACKIE…..GURL….you are being mightily used and I am so excited to watch God work through you! Praying HE will do great things through and for you!

      • JackieD

        Hello, my good friend! So good to hear from you. Thank you so much for your prayers and encouragement throughout the time we’ve known each other. You’ve been a blessing to me and many others and I pray that will continue. I’m so glad that Mr. Samuel’s eyes told you a story of his faith and gratitude for the simple gifts of life, sweet potatoes. I can often forget to give thanks in the hustle of my day for the very small and simple gifts that God bestows upon me to show His love. Mr. Samuel has learned that great lesson. In the middle of harvesting his crop, he stops to look upwards and give thanks. His arms holding out the best (first fruits) as an offering of love and thanks. I’m sure he shared those with a neighbor needing a blessing for their table. 🙂 I love that verse you shared, Col.3:17. I will ‘chew’ on that as I continue to work on additional pieces that hopefully will highlight what a wonderful Savior and Lord we are blessed to call our own.

        Please come back to the site often and share messages (simple gifts) that can bless those that have subscribed to this blog. You have a wonderful ministry of explaining and teaching the Word of God.

        Hope to hear from you soon. Your sister-in-Christ, Jackie

  • JeanitaJj

    I love this! I love the look of gratitude and the sincerity of Mr. Samuel’s appreciation for the thing that most of us take for granted – food. From the lines on Mr. Samuel’s face you can tell that he’s been through some things, and seen a lot. I bet he could tell us a lot about his experience living through the Great Depression, and how we should never take something like a few sweet potatoes for granted. Nor the soil, the rain, or the sunlight. Because they all played apart in creating this nourishing bounty. What a wonderful, inspiring piece.

    • JackieD

      Yes, Mr. Samuel has seen it all. His rough hands and sinewy frame have weathered many hard and demanding journeys within his lifetime. Working the rich soil to harvest the plentiful bounty of sweet potatoes was just a small facet of the victory. Looking towards heaven in that moment, he was filled with gratitude. His heart was grateful for all things great and small. The smell of the overturned earth, the brisk Fall breeze on his back alerting him of an early snow and the abiding strength within his aged body to work his field one more time…true blessings. Lifting his eyes and an offering of his crop’s best to the heavens, he silently gave thanks. How can one speak in the presence of such wondrous love?

      Mr. Samuel reminds me to give thanks with a grateful heart for each blessing no matter how common for they are all gifts from our Father as an expression of His love for us.

      Thanks so much for sharing a portion of your journey and thoughts with us!