Ilse Kleyn

Artwork Uploaded: 560 Pieces

Country: South Africa

Church Name: Logos Chiristian Church

Medium: oil

About Ilse Kleyn

Since I was a little girl, I wanted to paint full-time. Unfortunately after school a career in the arts was not possible. I then joined the Police force and became a Police artist, drawing wanted criminals and stolen goods! After 4 years in the IDENTIKITT department, I was promoted and my career started serious as a Police officer fighting crime. At this time I met my husband, which was also in the police force. Something inside of me happened to me when my first daughter was born. Looking so vulnerable when I first held her, I realised my life had to drastically change. I encountered the Lord Jesus and completely surrendered my life to Him. The sixteen years in the Police Force was mostly marked with a continuous and deep longing for a different life. It was as if something was missing and then I came to the end of myself. Working night shifts in squatter camps, closing down shebeens, arresting drug smugglers, prostitutes and much more took its toll on me. One morning in 2004, I cried out to God to help me and He clearly gave me a promise to hold onto. From Scripture He told me that one day I will decorate the walls of temples and will find favour with kings. (Ezra 7:27 Blessed be Jehovah, the God of our fathers, who has put this in the king's heart, to beautify the house of Jehovah in Jerusalem, and has extended mercy before the king and his counsellors and before all the king's mighty princes. And I was made strong as the hand of Jehovah my God was on me, and I gathered out of Israel chief men to go up with me. ). I truly found favour with the most High King – Jesus Christ! I held tight to that promise every time a drunk spat on me or called me names; every time I was looked over for promotion; every time people complained and accused; every day I expectantly waited for the season and fulfilment of the promise in my heart – to paint full-time. As time passed, my heart grew weary…… My life started slipping away from God. I felt far from Him and was not living a godly life any longer. I stopped going to church and no longer attended other spiritual activities, retreating into a world of my own. I thought I will never be good enough for the Lord, will never deserve Him again! How well I believed that lie! I ran from the Lord while He was running towards me! I learnt grace, true grace. I learned that He loved me unconditionally. My whole life was restored and at a time when I least deserved it, the Lord made my dream come true and released me to paint full-time. My husband was the one who took my paintings to galleries. I was simply too scared and did not have confidence in my own work. Sometimes my paintings were accepted and sometimes not. It was a small beginning, but it kept on growing. In that first year after I resigned from the police force, I sold more than 100 small paintings! Then buyers from overseas started to contact me. In 2011 the “Rhema” Word I received from the Lord started to come in fulfilment. Lindi Gouws, a great Christian leader in our country, felt lead by the Lord that she and other delegates of South-Africa must move up to Israel and go and honour and pray for Israel – taking with them, gift from the tribes of Africa. This event was to take place in March 2012. One of the gift was to a pomegrade and they choose my painting of a pomegrade. March 2012 I stood in Jesusalem and handed over my painting to delegates of Israel appointed by God. Blessed be Jehovah, the God of our fathers, who has put this in the king's heart, to beautify the house of Jehovah in Jerusalem, Surrounding me were 300 delegates from Africa …and has extended mercy before the king and his counsellors and before all the king's mighty princes. And I was made strong as the hand of Jehovah my God was on me, and I gathered out of Israel chief men to go up with me. ) This was exactly 8 years after the Lord gave me His Word – 8 – fulfilment! The last few years have been a time of living in faith. A time in which, I learned to depend on the Lord for my every need. A time I will not exchange for any gold, silver or fame of this world. God became much more real to me. He became my friend, my father who cares for me, my happiness, and my ultimate! God gave me a dream one which He planted - together with abilities that He gave. I never studied art and never learned how to run a business. Now the journey continues. ……

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