You might say, "A canvas is just a blank cloth". A canvas is just a blank, ordinary cloth but when an artist gets a hold of that cloth and starts doing what only he or she can do, the canvas becomes a beautiful picture, a magnificent story. That is what God does in our lives. He takes our ordinary, meaningless, purposeless lives and through Jesus He transforms our lives into something glorious. We become His workmanship, His poem, His story.
Canvas is not just about what God does in our individual lives. God takes our canvas, our stories, our brokenness, our pain, our victories, our joys, our giftedness and when He brings us together with others in the context of community, the Creator and giver of life begins to doing something epic as our stories come together.
A canvas can also be identified as a strong cloth used for sailing. Some people live their lives as if they were like a motorboat. They feel like they are in charge but they eventually run out of gas. Other people are like rafts. They just float aimlessly through life never really ending up anywhere. Others are like a sailboat. They lift the sail or the canvas and prepare to head in a certain direction, waiting for the wind. We desire our lives to be like a sailboat. We want to lift the canvas, the story of what God has done and is doing in our lives and believe the wind will come and the supernatural will take place. We can't manufacture the supernatural. We can, however, position the posture of our lives in such a way that we live in surrender, adjusting our lives to His purposes, asking the Lord to work mightily through us.
The reality is: God is always at work around us and He is always painting on a canvas bigger than we can see. He is using His Word, His Spirit, people, prayer, and circumstances to pursue a love relationship with each of us in ways beyond what we can often see or comprehend in our daily lives.