I spend a lot of time creating things. Some days I catch myself wondering if it’s a waste. Why do I write the words and melodies, snap the pictures, write the blog post, or dream about the book I’ll finish one day? I don’t make a dime. I am certainly not a writer in demand!:) And yet… I think creating is a big part of what I’m called to do.
For any of you who have read my blog, it will come as no surprise that I found my answer in a Frederick Buechner book. I have always felt a deep connection to Buechner’s writing. He gives words to the thoughts that swim between my dreams and my waking – things that drive to the very core of me but I cannot name.
This quote from The Remarkable Ordinary sums up why I wander in the woods and struggle with my pen and paper.
“So, art is saying Stop. It helps us to stop by putting a frame around something and makes us see it in a way we would never have seen it under the normal circumstances of living, as so many of us do, on sort of automatic pilot, going through the world without really seeing much of anything.”
That is why I wrote this post, why I get up before dawn and ignore mosquitos, heat or cold to take my photos, why I spend hours trying to get a melody just right. First, it is for me. It is my way of telling my heart, “STOP! Look at this. Really look at this.”
Then I share some of these things with you so that you might say to yourself, “STOP! Would you look at that? What a wonder!” I don’t want you to look at my photo of the moon and say, “Look at my friend’s post. She is a great photographer.” My hope is that you think, “I can’t believe she saw that in Magnolia, TX. Hey, I can see stuff like that, too!”
Next time you see a beautiful moonrise, consider that no one who has ever lived or who ever will live is standing in the exact spot as you, at that exact time, with the specific memories and emotions and dreams you bring to the moment. That moment is a gift from the universe, from The Creator, in my opinion, for you and you alone.
When we create, in our feeble attempt to capture this magic, we get to participate in the divine dance. We are framing tiny miracle moments. If my art influences a handful of people and deepens their desire to find their own such moments, I am contributing to the very work of creation – I am bringing wonder, love, and peace to the world in a way only I am equipped to do.
You and I are also works of art. As we expand our ability to pay attention to nature, we begin to see each other through new filters. More from Buechner from his book Whistling in the Dark:
“So we are to see each other like that, as Jesus sees us, framed as if each one of our faces is seen by him.”
I hope for anyone who reads this, that you might have eyes to see the love infused into the corners of creation you encounter. And may we all see each other – and ourselves – as the spectacular works of art that we are!