Breathing space for my soul
Happy summer time! I am busy getting up to all kinds of fun with my children, They have creative and busy minds and sometimes it is really hard to keep up. I love being with them but it means I often sit at my computer at the end of the day with what feels like no ideas or energy left.
It is great that creativity comes from God and he never, ever runs out of ideas and energy. I am learning everyday that time with him is the place to find fresh energy, hope, peace, grace and wisdom. We have needed a lot of wisdom this year in so many areas and hearing from him and doing what He says (even when you feel a bit wobbly about it) is always the best plan.
God is the most skilled and experienced artist and designer. When it comes to the artwork of our lives, He knows where to place colour, brushstrokes, imagery, line and hue. In order to create the most beautiful art that combines balance, integrity and order with fresh life, individuality and spark.
When I worked 'in house' for a design company we used to talk about allowing 'breathing space' in a design. This speaks to me of life and how sometimes God causes or allows breathing space moments. These breathing space moments or sometimes what feels like frustratingly long seasons of breathing space, mean you can stop. You can assess with him what has been and what might be next. Without breathing space in a design it is hard to visually read and understand the design. It is hard to appreciate and enjoy the elements that are part of it and their relationship to one another,
Also if a design lacked range in tone or colour we would add what we called technically a 'pop' colour to lift and bring contrast. We always played with varying scales, colourways and layouts to keep the customer interested and avoid repeating ourselves. This memory challenges me also to not put God in a box. To not fall into the trap of keeping him in a framework where I with my human mind can understand Him. He is far, far, far bigger than that. If I limit him to my understanding I risk being satisfied with a human image of a relationship with God. That relationship will then feel like that flat, safe design lacking vibrancy, range of colour.
Just as at work I would be challenged for getting stuck in using a particular colourway that I liked repeatedly or working with a certain scale or layout that I felt safe using. There are things and mindsets in life to get stuck in that feel safe and known. But there is always more in God, he will not be contained by us. He designs and produces art using varying and endless colourways, design layouts and scale. As a designer there is nothing more exciting to me than a blank sheet of paper and the spark of an idea in my mind, the bigger the paper the more exciting. Let's not keep him to postcard size artwork. He is God, his brushstrokes span eternity and his paper the universe.
In particular I feel very excited about the unlimited creative tools there are to express his heart for us all and His character. One day I have a stained glass window idea and I research courses to teach myself next minute I want to learn ceramics.
I am also appreciating how much he works outside of the church, he permeates society and has influence in all spheres of life. He is a multi disciplined artist skilled in all forms of communicating his love and passion for us. Wow we get to throw out our small minded frameworks of understanding him and can try using a new colourway, layout and do something daring with scale in the design. We can go deeper in relationship with him to join him in creating art of all kinds. We can grow in creative wisdom and insight.
I don't know what the next brushstrokes in our lives as a family will look like but I know the artist that does and he is good and skilled and exciting to be around. So lets 'adventure in these extravagant dimensions of his love' Ephesians 3 v 18 says "Reach out and experience the breadth! Test its length! Plumb the depths! Rise to the heights! Live full lives, full in the fullness of God".