Maria’s Journey: From Small Town Beginnings to Artistic Calling
Maria Oosthuizen, born in 1972 in the charming town of Paarl, South Africa, shares a remarkable journey that intertwines family, faith, and a newfound artistic calling. Growing up on the grounds of HS van der Walt Girls’ High, where her father was a teacher, Maria’s childhood was idyllic, filled with memories of jacaranda trees and vineyards, and shared with her parents, siblings, and the joy of a close-knit family.
Relocations to Standerton and Heidelberg marked pivotal moments in Maria’s life. Despite her dreams of attending the SA Army Women’s College and studying drama and art in Stellenbosch, she found herself immersed in marketing and social work. Recognizing a different calling, she transitioned into a successful marketing career, reaching the position of marketing manager at TCD Trading in Pretoria, armed with diplomas in business management and web development.
In 1995, Maria embarked on a new chapter as she married Francois Oosthuizen and lived in England for nearly two years. The birth of her children, Katinka, Sharl-Francois, and Rigter, prompted Maria to delve deeper into her spiritual journey, seeking God’s wisdom to guide her in raising her children after His heart.
A turning point came when Maria felt a divine nudge to explore her talents. Guided by the belief that every gift should be used for God’s glory, she pursued hairstyling, blending skill with faith. Simultaneously, a newfound passion for painting emerged. Despite lacking formal art training, Maria trusted in a higher power and embarked on a journey of artistic expression.
In 2006, a powerful moment occurred as Maria painted a feet-washing scene, feeling a clear message resonate within her: “Take what I have given you and change the world.” With unwavering faith, Maria embraced her calling to paint. Despite challenges and uncertainties, she left everything in God’s hands, dedicating her life to her art and various acts of service, including washing feet.
Maria’s testimony serves as a testament to the transformative power of faith, resilience, and embracing one’s divine calling. Her journey, from a small town in South Africa to a painter driven by a higher purpose, encourages others to listen to the whispers of their own calling and trust in the path that unfolds before them. May Maria’s story ignite a flame of inspiration in the hearts of those who read it, in the name of Jesus, amen.
Artwork of Maria exhibited at Crouse Art Gallery. Original art of more than 60 top South African Artists – Since 1999.