There are a few things I love, a few things I get really pumped and passionate and even precise about: people, words, food, the human heart. I love to indulge in all of these, and had for many years, left it up to others to bring these essential things to my life.
Until I needed them.
Until I was desperate for them.
Until the belief in myself that I could actually find and create and cultivate these things in my life was birthed.
I’m still discovering my capability, but I’m learning, I’m leaning…into all of these things. And it’s good. So, so, good. My ability to love and write and cook and listen…they’re growing. Some of it comes from looking deep within at the soulful places, some of it comes from allowing my heart to soar and shine.
We were created to create, to express God’s beauty and glory and heart to the world. It’s one of the ways that we image him. That thing we create, that stunningly beautiful and needed thing is something unique and distinct that rises out from the core of our being.
But, we have to find it. We have to tap into it. We have to feel it. We have to believe in it.
No…we don’t have to. We get to.
We get to express who we are, what we find meaningful and moving and valuable…and find a way to express that to the world – as a gift, not out of duty or obligation. It’s then when we can offer that thing without needing approval or acceptance or praise. It’s then when we know that we were created for something more than meeting other people’s expectations. It’s then when it becomes a free expression of the work God has done in us, and called out of us. It’s then when the sacrifice that goes into creating that thing becomes an act of love.
For the past 10 years, the place that I’ve had the opportunity to “create” has been in a counseling space. Me sitting with one or two other people for an hour at a time. It’s sacred. It’s healing. For them. For me. I’ve had this profound invitation to step into other people’s lives and join them right where they’re at…in their ache and disappointment and fragility and fear, in their questions and doubts and despair and longing, in their learning and stretching and moving and becoming…more of who they are, more of who they were created to be. It’s taken a lot of practice to learn how to listen, really listen, to not only their words and ideas and assumptions and hurt, but to their heart. And then, together, navigate through the murky, hidden, unknown and shameful places…and find light, truth, clarity, healing, freedom…Jesus. Ahhhh! It blows me away that this is my job. It blows me away how God initiates and restores and reconciles and redeems in that space, and how I get to play a role in the process. It’s holy ground and I’m so, so grateful to serve the men and women I meet with in this unique way.
It just so happens that my “artistic form” has been creating a space for the human heart to be heard and affirmed and expressed. But, isn’t that what all art does? Invite the human heart to feel and show itself and tell its story? Well then, can’t we all be artists? Aren’t we all capable of inviting out the very place that true art comes from? So maybe, the process of creating our own unique art, and allowing others and ourselves to become a part of it, could actually transform each person – the maker and the consumer.
May you know how good and valuable and capable and loveable you are, your heart is. And then, find ways to splash and scatter and swipe and mold and paste and sing and strum what’s inside you…to the world.
NOTE: Photograph by Sarah Carter, a true creator and artist. You can find her unique work here. She was a guest on this blog back in November during National Adoption Month, sharing about her “waiting heart.”