Adventures in New York City.
As you can imagine, the past few months have been Filled with just trying to survive the winter!! We've been hit by snowstorm after snowstorm, walking miles in the freezing cold.
My Southern friends gasp at the thought of it, although It really isn't so bad with the right gear. Being outside in the middle of 'doing' is so tactile & exhilarating, way more than the cozy warm car.
Probably what really prepared me for this was when I had gotten a glimpse of what we are capable of around 8 years ago in MI, in the freezing cold. This Southern girl got off the sofa and trained for a 1/2 marathon in way below freezing temps. The feelings I had then I had never had before in my life. It was like being imortal or flying or something that humans just couldn't or shouldn't do, it took me by such surprise. Being at home under the warm covers was what I used to think was the better deal, especially if the sun wasn't up and extra especially if it was freezing or below. Now, since I got that glimpse into what could be, being at home cozy and warm was definitely not as fun as being out experiencing the sunrise over the frozen lake, seeing the ice crystals floating in the light, breathing so much steam that my eyes would fog.
So all of that is to say, I kind of like being in the outside, even if it is cold and snowy. Engaging the senses keeping me present, always tactile and raw, i think is far better than car culture any day.
So much for even getting to the car 1/2 this winter though.
One Year and Two months has been so full of adventure, wonder and self examination, with plenty of faith growing and maturing opportunities (which I need desperately). I have a brand new understanding of people, of how a city thrives & for God to allow me to be apart of this amazing story even if it is in a minute way, I feel very blessed.
Having been Graced with participating in another program through the Redeemer Church's Center for Faith and work / artists. I am humbled by this experience as well, wishing you all could come be apart of it too! Once a week sitting amongst of some amazing people who are musicians, improve specialists, NY Times pick of the week play-write, actors, and visual artists, i am humbled to be there amongst such talent! We are helping each other in the maturing process by stretching each other's understanding of Christ, Grace, Repentence, and how our work is interwoven with our faith.
Through this journey in faith and art, I have begun to paint again and open my heart up to working in multimedia.
To discover painting again for me is much like running into a distant relative where once there was a warm close relationship which unexpectedly had grown so distant, eventually becoming nonexistent, and to have that relationship suddenly revived, restored, and good again and with all the joys that brings!!
A lot in the same way, meeting this once before person which was me at one time, who i thought was gone, has been a quite unexpected yet a very welcoming and joyful journey.
Who would have thought this part of me would reappear? My longings for a life lived with authenticity are coming to the surface.
All my prayers for God to break down the walls around my heart are being answered.
Will this be a step that leads me back to trust? Am I willing to risk being hurt, or rejected again?
The beautiful part of this story is that God is doing what he does best. That is He is restoring, resurrecting, replenishing old places that were broken, empty, rotten, Dead in me & He's breathing new life in all of those places, making all things new.
This is bigger than just me, He's actually in process of doing this for all who are believers.
Fear and lack of faith and no solid understandings, immaturity and hardheartedness, anger, bitterness jealousy and total lack of trust were ruling all of my heart for too many years.
Me, yes me. You wouldn't know it, but it was why I hid from being fully known by anyone for such a long time.
What does all this seemingly irrelivant information have to do with art?
Creating is scary. To Create you have to be in tune with your authentic self, and where jealousy or bitterness rules, the temptation to compare yourself to others is too great and will destroy the process before it begins. Believe me I know from experience.
Why am I sharing this personal journey? Because God is in the business of restoring and truth.
Art is One of our creator's greatest tools that he uses to touch and open hearts all over the world.
Think about it, You might only be overcome with certain emotions when a screen play moves you to tears, or you discover a new social cause to fight for through someone else's art. Or what about a photograph that brings to mind a forgotten memory or even triggers emotions once numb to. Those are windows into your heart, touching you with a new language that only your spirit can understand. Art is so valuable like that.
To risk, to create and put it out there raw and in the open. Will it be good enough? Will people want it? Will I have any other ideas ever again? Can I sustain being creative? Will there be provision, shall I be tempted to run back to safety?
Then, I remember, there is a well where I go, where I get my water, it always satisfyies and it never runs dry.
Now, for as long as i live here in NYC, for as long as God allows me to endure this trial, Each day I am committed to dive into beauty, creation, details in nature, to learn how to be as skilled as I can, trust, jump into safe arms, believe that this is where I need to be.
My daughter's work ethic has taught me a thing or two.
1. Draw anything and everything often.
2. Create all the time, doesn't matter which tool you are using to create with .. Paint, collage, photography, keep creating just because it honors God and He is pleased
3. Work until your butt hurts from sitting too long.