In December of 2011, I was diagnosed with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome on both hands.  I had hoped the cervical fusion surgery of October was the source of my hands going to sleep and becoming numb while working.  It was not and now I was having more surgery.  First my right hand in January and now my left hand in February.  This surgery was so simple and short according to the Doc.  The right one had gone great but before I was to have surgery on my left, while lying in the bed before surgery, I had of all things a panic attack.  I have been a pro at surgeries I thought.  This was now number 7 already.

They eventually calmed me down and I was able to have the surgery.  The night before I had really struggled with having the surgery.  My right hand was not even healed yet but my doctors all advised to have it.  I am guessing 30 years of carving had finally done it.

All of it was just so much.  Over the course of several months, I had experienced loss.  I could not do my art work.  My ministry had ended in a way that I did not necessarily chose at the time.  There was loss of income.  Loss of purpose.  Loss of outdoor experiences because of my neck surgery earlier.  And more importantly, A feeling that I was just plain lost.

Surgery went as expected and the Doctor came out and said that my hand was as bad as any he had ever seen in doing these surgeries.  I guess my years of working on my hands and me waiting to have surgery had all added up.  There was a sense of relief that this was over and I had asked my wife Karen for some ice and a sprite.  She had waited in the room during surgery and was there to meet me in recovery.

After eating some ice and drinking a sip of sprite, I was talking with her when suddenly I found myself gone!  Gone as in just plain out of existence.  Can’t explain it but gone.  I was talking with Karen all the time this was happening and I told her, I am lost.  She said What?  I said I am lost and I can’t find my way out.  At the same time, I was standing in a field, a field that at the time looked like Johnson grass of all things.  Suddenly while standing in this field, and experiencing this immense feeling of loneliness and fear, God came to me, took my hand, and started walking with me.

Within a few moments, I suddenly came back to existence and told Karen what had happened and immediately  began to cry.   I told her that I had just seen God and she was just shocked.  She asked me what did God look like and I said I don’t know?  I just knew that God had me by the hand and was walking with me.  After I told my children the story, they were afraid that I had coded and almost died and this was some sort of near death experience.  I told them that it was not.

So in this painting, I am Found!  I am not sure of just what it all means and I am not sure about the future, but I know one thing, God Found me!  This is my impression of that field, all covered with color.  I still don’t know a lot.  My hands are better. My neck is better.  Don’t know about the future for now.  But one thing I know and that is that I am Found!

Copies of this painting are currently being created for those who would like to order one.  Please contact me at  if you are interested.

10 Replies to “Found!”

  1. Read your article in Christian Ethics Today. Powerful and honest. Thank you. Would like to know price of a copy of this piece. Found myself wanting to just get lost in staring at it. Thank you.

    1. Thank you Vicki! Even as we speak I am getting quotes on it and as soon as it is in hand I will let you know. I am glad you enjoyed the essay. Kerry

  2. I too read your article in Christian Ethics Today. I have suffered with back problems since being injured in 1973. I have had a couple of successful surgeries but the accumulation of all the others has left me with chronic pain. I thank God I have always been able to work and hopefully have a few years left.
    I really needed your words. Thanks for telling your story but I am most thankful for your suggestions at the end in an effort to help friends and family understand us. CET is way behind on publishing their issues on the Internet. Is it in print anywhere else or could you trust me with an email copy to share with my family. I think it would help my brother and sister understand my mother’s pain.
    Thanks again for the article. I have been waiting for someone to write the things you wrote. May God bless you.

    1. Hi Jimmy, I am so very grateful for your kind words. For those of us who struggle with Chronic Pain, it is difficult to explain the depths of the daily struggle. I am emailing the editor of CET to see what can be done. Peace to you friend and know of my thoughts and prayers for you! Kerry

  3. Glad I chose to read your article in CET. My wife struggles with chronic pain and inflammation. You helped me see things from a different perspective, thank you! Your reflections and artwork are truly inspiring, if not also profoundly challenging. Grace and peace to you and your family…

    1. Thank you Trey! Know of my thoughts and prayers for you all as you deal with Chronic Pain. The article has been a source of help for a number of people and I am grateful to at least have a voice for those who struggle with Chronic Pain.

  4. Kerry,

    I thought that your story was beautiful. I to suffer from chronic pain. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.
    What is the cost of your piece?

    1. Hi Lisa, and thank you. Even today I am waiting to hear back from my neurosurgeon to redo last years fusion. I hold on to my experience because I till can’t use my hands real well at all. Let me give you several different options for the cost of a print. I have them done locally as people request them. A 24×30 stretched canvas print is $240. If it is done on a hard backing it is about half that amount. And if it is smaller than 24×30, the price goes lower plus shipping. I like to do them locally because number 1, I have control over what gets printed and number 2, its not in some other country.

      Tell me the size you need and I will get you a quote. God Bless you Lisa on this journey! I pray we all find one form of relief friend!


  5. Kerry, it’s a friend from NPR with a reminder that somedays you get the bear and somedays the bear gets you.

    Ask Ed for my email address or phone nember. I’d like to talk with you before you go to Alaska.

    1. Hey man, I am so glad you found me and I am truly hopeful that I get the bear and not vice versa! But I swear man, the bear of this chronic pain is just eating at me.

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