I absolutely love it when an artistic or creative idea comes to mind. I never really considered myself a very creative person growing up, but I was also very lost. Lost in society and in knowing who and whose I was. There wasn’t much that inspired me, but now inspiration comes often.
Foxes have been considered pests, sly, cunning and clever.
First of all, let me say a big HELLO!!! I’m back from my travels and looking forward to getting the creative juices flowing again. 🙂
Would you consider your time here – your earthly life – a sojourn?
Sojourn: A temporary stay (noun); To stay somewhere temporarily (verb)
I love what Temple Grandin (one of the first individuals on the autism spectrum to publicly share insights from her personal experience of autism) said when confronted with the issue of death. A horse had died, and she asked, “Where’d he go?”
It may sound funny, but really is an existential question that we all face. Where do we go when our bodies die?
As for me, I believe that who I really am, returns to my maker once my body dies. My stay here really is temporary.
Unfortunately, we live in a world that is full of darkness. A mountain of madness and a plethora of ugliness happens daily. All-over-the-world.
I am thankful though, that I have big shoulders to rest between. That place of rest is a place of provision and security. My maker remembers that I am but dust, and He is perfect in every way. He provides me with pockets of silence and peace amid all the chaos.
Do you consider your time on Earth a sojourn?
You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless, until they can find rest in you. ~Augustine
I am very affected by climate changes. When it’s sunny and warm, I am happy and full of life. When it is cold and grey, I am lethargic and down. Actually, I get very depressed.
I love the quote above by Augustine. It reminds me that my deepest needs can not be met in the material, nor by me. It reminds me that I need to run to one that is greater than me.
This poem was birthed out of deep depression and great need. It reminds me of what King David wrote in the Psalms; “Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me?”
He spoke to his own soul; so I did the same. I went to the one that is higher than I and poured out my heart. And you know what? I found rest, comfort and reassurance. My mind was no longer playing tricks on me. I decided I was not going to be a prisoner to the screams in my mind and the tightness in my heart. That doesn’t mean that negative feelings never come back, but they can’t control me.
How do you deal with negative feelings?
We live in a fallen, fractured world of broken people and fragmented value systems. Some are fortunate enough to have a happy and healthy upbringing, but I would dare to say that they are in the minority.
I lived in fear of my dad, and don’t know what it means to have or feel affection towards him. I’m not one to lick past wounds and wallow in sorrow; however, I do recognize that our upbringing shapes us and makes us into who we eventually become as adults. For example, my mom used to make my brothers and me watch documentaries on what drugs can do to someone. I’m so glad she did, because although I dabbled in a little experimentation in my youth, drugs always frightened the heck out of me.
Another personal example, and as stated above, is that I grew up in fear of my dad. He was a broken alcoholic and had many unhealthy issues that were never dealt with. Because of that, my childhood was robbed from me. Because of that, my idea of family was distorted and messed up.
I have worked on finding healing in this area. When I was a fairly new Christian, I would leave for work in the morning at peace, after spending some quiet time with God. By the time I got home, I was full of anxiety. When I felt anxious, I always thought I was doing something that God didn’t approve of. One day He showed me that I feared him the way I feared my dad, and that was revelatory for me.
How about you? Do you believe that we live in a broken world? Do you think that our upbringing makes a huge difference on our emotional and mental well-being?
Have you ever seen a crimson rose? I have only seen them in photos, but never in real life. They are beautiful and have a deep, rich color. So deep that sometimes they can even resemble the color of blood.
It’s meaning is two-way, signifying loss, death and mourning, as well as rebirth and love. It makes me think of a love that is committed and passionate. One that is willing to sacrifice for the good of another. One that is even willing to die for another. This type of love is a rare and beautiful thing.
Have you ever experienced a love like that?
Shanti is a Sanskrit word and means peace, calmness, tranquility. It can be spelled either with or without an ‘h’ at the end, however, the inclusion of the ‘h’ at the end, most commonly seen in the popular modernist poem by T.S. Eliot, ‘The Wasteland’, translates it as, ‘The peace which passeth understanding.’
The Bible talks about this ‘peace which passeth all understanding’ when it addresses the issue of anxiety. I used to get very anxious, in fact, most of my wrinkles probably come from how anxious I used to get. I have learned though, that there is one infinitely bigger than little old finite me, that is able to carry my load, thankfully.
When I became a Christian, I used to get anxious daily. Sometimes I would return home from work in tears. Then one day, out of nowhere, I sensed that God spoke into my heart, “Staci, you fear me as you feared your dad”. I think the manifestation of that fear was me trying to please God religiously. Whenever I felt the anxiety come on, I always thought it was because I was doing something wrong in the eyes of God. Over time, I realized that God’s love for me didn’t depend on what I did. His acceptance of me was purely and entirely an act of mercy and grace.
One of the most fundamental needs of human beings is relationship. To me, being a Christian is all about that – Relationship. Relationship, and not religion.
“…My joy and peace. These intangibles slake the thirst of your soul, providing deep satisfaction.” Sarah Young-Jesus Calling
Are you an anxious person? How do you seek peace?
I love to create. I believe we were made to create. It’s like a driving force within. There’s a certain high that comes with creating something. The inspiration high.
I am a huge fan of the Ted Talks. There’s this one I’ve watched a couple of times by Elizabeth Gilbert, the author of ‘Eat, Pray, Love’. She spoke about creativity and how it could be divinely inspired. She shared the following:
In ancient Greece and ancient Rome people did not happen to believe that creativity came from human beings back then. People believed that creativity was this divine attendant spirit that came to human beings from some distant and unknowable source for distant and unknowable reasons. The Greeks famously called these divine attendant spirits of creativity ‘Daemons’. Socrates famously believed that he had a Daemon who spoke to him from afar. The Romans had the same idea but they called that sort of disembodied spirit a ‘Genius’, which was great because the Romans did not actually think that a genius was a particularly clever individual. They believed that a genius was this sort of magical divine entity who was believed to literally live in the walls of an artist’s studio … and who would come out and invisibly assist the artist with their work and who would shape the outcome of that work (source).
Now I don’t believe that there are genius’ in the walls, but I do believe that creativity and inspiration can be divine and is something that has been carved – breathed – into each of us. Like I mentioned in a past post, we all have an impulse to create. It’s in our veins.
Do you love to create? Do you believe that we were made to create? Where do you think creativity and inspiration comes from?
The above poem is one that I wrote some time ago. I wanted to embed it into an original art piece, because in the past I had it embedded in a photograph. I’m not completely happy about the way the painting turned out, but I guess that’s all part of the learning process.
Please forgive me if I’ve been a little distant lately. I have been quite busy. I will be around very soon though ok. 🙂 ❤
- The condition of being oneself, and not another
- Condition or character as to who a person is
- The set of behavioural or personal characteristics by which an individual is recognizable
- the fact of being who or what a person or thing is
- Characteristics, definition, defining oneself
Thinking back to how I used to be, and pondering all of what I’ve gone through, I consider myself nothing less than a miracle. The need for the sense of identity is very important to human beings, both on an individual and social level. My identity was so lost and confused in the past, but God has brought me through so much.
I love the passage in the Bible where God calls a prophet to choose a new King. The prophet went to the house of a certain man who had seven sons. When he saw the biggest and strongest son, he thought definitely he was to be the new king. God told him ‘no’. In fact, the answer was no for every one of the sons that this man had presented to the prophet. He then asked the man if he had any other sons, and he said that there was one more, but he was out in the fields tending the sheep. A very humble position at best, for that day and age. When the prophet saw this son, right then and there God said, “That’s the one”. God wasn’t looking at his outer appearance. He was looking at his heart. I love that.
Today, I am comfortable in my own skin. I am sure of my identity, and of what is expected of me. I know that what really matters is how God sees me, and He knows my heart. And He should. His finger prints can be found all over it.
Where, or in what do you find your identity? Are you comfortable in your own skin, and secure in who you are as an individual and within a group?
The above I wrote some time ago, but I wanted to create a new art piece for it.