the nature of my struggle

i have just finished reading home is where one starts from. i haven't been reading for many days now, but she is the sister of some others of my friends. one thing that i get discouraged by is being an artist in a world of artists. how am i unique, how will i create original art that no one else has seen before. i also struggle with feeling like i see and feel things as an artist much differently than non artist types. i often have extreme feelings of sadness when i see and experience beautiful things. i have grown to have a hard shell of emotion about me. i have become much softer through repentance, forgiveness and god's miraculous grace. i wanted to kinda respond to some of the things that kelly expressed. i want to soak up the beauty and become the landscape, similar to the pain that kelly experiences because she wants to be in "them."
i remember a conversation from way back when i was a teenager, sitting in a field looking out over grass and trees and distant mountains. i don't remember which friend was keeping me company, but i remember sharing feelings of longing brought on by the beauty of our surroundings. i remember the feeling, because it's followed me ever since and it follows me still. at the time i described it as not being able to enjoy the trees because the pain of wanting to be in them was too great. i hoped heaven was the kind of place where great beauty didn't cause pain.

it is a pain that i feel. a feeling of being displaced in the beauty and not knowing where i fit or how to describe myself as a potential part of the beauty. there are these moments of longing for something more. i struggle with mourning the destruction and consequences of human failure. in the midst of pain or suffering it is much easier to ignore the positive or the miraculous, because the pain maybe so great. yet in beauty the positivity and miraculous is all too obvious and overwhelming. i feel incapable of experiencing joy the way that i should or could. i have wondered what in my life has taken my joy from me that when i see something wonderful i can't even accept it. i came to some resolution in realizing that my joy is stolen by the ugly beliefs i have in my heart. i tend to believe that i don't deserve the beauty or the joy. that belief to me is a direct result of the fact that i don't trust that god claims me as his daughter. bottom line. maybe i cry when i see beautiful things because i have a faith that tells me god's creation is one part of all the promises he keeps with me. sometimes i am humbled and moved too deeply to speak or i want so badly to leave work and curl up in a blanket outside on the grass under a bright tree, sorta like kelly in the field. i think the most important thing for me is to learn to not react against the experience. it is far more difficult achieving nonreaction than it is to say it. but my confidence and contentment doesn't have much to do with what i do or don't do. i'll screw up one way or another. backwards, forwards, horizontally, vertically a mess. but yes of course the contentment is the stand that christ takes beside me. the comfort of knowing i do not have joy all of the time. christ knows that the beauty we experience must bring conflict into our lives. we know of the kingdom, we see the kingdom at work, we have faith in the promises of the kingdom but what we see and hear and feel here on earth is a just a reflection. it is exciting and breathtaking in those moments, but in many ways it is a temporary beauty that sustains us only when we believe. it doesn't surprise me that so many artists isolate themselves or disconnect in abstract ways. very few people are given the gift of creating and making. i believe in my artist ways that i am close to god, just as a business man might be close to god. we are indeed made in his image. i'll spend time thinking about that but in the long run letting go and thinking less makes a little bit of the process easier. letting go to trust. letting go to be made softer.


katieK said...

work it out kiddo, work it out!

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