The Arts of Living
June 19, 2011Under the trees in front of the Toucan Grill, with the smell of the fish house wafting in the warm breeze, we set up the tent. For Lisa, my daughter, this was her first outing as an artist. Both of us remarked that it was a little like uncovering our very souls for the world to see. Art is a personal extension of one's inner hopes, world views, senses and sensibilities, ideas and impressions held by the inner self spilled out in color, texture, and form that are no longer hidden but exposed as if we are standing naked. All things exposed are judged and subjected to a given value beyond how closely we hold these soul-whispers we have laid out for the world's eyes to see. A long hot day of having treasure hunters rifle through the heart yielded few results. There under the trees in the heat stood booth after booth of work scorching in the sun and sweating artists, all who likely held the same apprehension and fear of rejection we held. What if people don't like what we have offered? But the lesson that yielded itself came from the mouth of a local artist, who also was a little disappointed in the fruit of the day. The conversation was about the issue of knowing when a painting is finished. She said, "I work until I am fed up with the painting. It's then that I begin to take some risks with it. The risks usually lead to a better end result than I could even imagine." Risk-taking is not always the life lesson I want hear or think I need to know. But this is what I know, if I never put myself out there, if a fear of failure or non-acceptance keeps me from singing the song or painting the picture or writing the words God has put in me to sing, paint, or write, then I am my own dead end. Only in opening up to the world, uncovering the light that we tend too often to hide under the bushel, risking rejection and trusting that God has something bigger in mind for our lives will we find the abundant life Jesus promises. So sing and paint and write your life, because YOU are the only one who can sing your life! Our Creator God gives the gift; let the world rejoice in the ways you offer it. And to God be the glory. Amen.