Layered

red-sandstone-286091_1280

 

“I shut my eyes in order to see” – Paul Gauguin

I am revisiting time spent with Annie again, because in seeing the artwork that she was creating the day that we had our conversation, something became clear to me.

I went to the Refine retreat with a knowledge that Annie would be there. That wasn’t my reason for going, but I was excited to meet her. I had long admired the artwork that I had seen her create and was excited to be able to meet this gifted soul.

On Friday night as the Spirit moved us to share what he was revealing to our hearts, Annie shared about an art form called ‘kintsugi‘ which is a Japanese art form of the restoration of broken pottery with gold seams, rendering that which was broken and unfit for use, back into something of greater beauty and superior usefulness.

That theme seemed to encompass much of our weekend, seeing where the pieces of our life in which we had been broken, were being pieced back into something that God would use for his great glory. And I could see the layers taking shape in lives, as they shared moments that they had been wounded and were working towards restoration, and where other stories, verses and lyrics shared seemed to overlap into a type of tapestry weaving.

That Saturday as I spoke my story to Annie, I watched her layer pieces of tissue paper one upon the other for at least an hour. And she would tear and piece and sometimes turn over the piece…and though I was focused on telling my story and listening to her tell hers, I couldn’t for the life of me begin to see what she was creating. I knew she was placing with a purpose. I knew that in the tearing, the lifting and the putting down, and the smearing out…that something of beauty was being crafted, I just didn’t see it.

As we finished our conversation and she took some scissors to the end of her creation, its final form was revealed…and I gasped (inwardly) All the layers, all the pieces she had so specifically chosen, torn and moved with precision, when assembled in layer upon layer, created a beautiful marbled effect of a teacup she was seeking to create…and to which she would later add a golden like fastening of the broken pieces.

And this spoke to me in so many ways. Because she knew what she was doing. She could see as she turned it over and played with the colors, what the image would be like. Well what she hoped it would look like, but there was a plan in what looked very random to me. And in the end I couldn’t even begin to describe or seek to recreate the beauty that I saw before my eyes.

And then I got to thinking that life is so much like that. My human eyes are so frail and miss so much, that often I lose heart or perhaps hope that there is a greater plan for what’s taking place in my life, good or bad. And as I was reminded that evening as pieces of our stories merged together in the blending and the weaving, that indeed we are being molded and shaped in these bruisings and healings and tearing away of old things and restoration of new, that we are being made more like His Son…that these things are necessary in the creation of the beauty and wholeness for which He created us.

And the blood of His Son, shed on Calvary’s tree, is the very thing that binds this brokenness together into something far more glorious and beautiful then we human could even think of creating. So these things, this unknown, as my human eyes take it in and wonder at the beauty that is being created, I am slowly learning to trust and see small glimpses of the tapestry and beautiful pottery that fills the champers of my Lord’s throne room.

This is the beautiful pieces that Annie was creating:

annies art(photo borrowed from Annie`s Blog: http://www.besmallstudios.com)

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The most important things are the hardest to say. They are the things you get ashamed of, because words diminish them — words shrink things that seemed limitless when they were in your head to no more than living size when they’re brought out. But it’s more than that, isn’t it? The most important things lie too close to wherever your secret heart is buried, like landmarks to a treasure your enemies would love to steal away. And you may make revelations that cost you dearly only to have people look at you in a funny way, not understanding what you’ve said at all, or why you thought it was so important that you almost cried while you were saying it. That’s the worst, I think. When the secret stays locked within not for want of a teller but for want of an understanding ear.”
― Stephen King, Different Seasons

 

shared by Kris Camealy on facebook

spoken word = see me not see me

this spoken word totally hit me between the eyes and kept be reeling…i’m saving the words here cause i don’t want to just hear them and not remember…they are part of my heartbeat.

I want you to love me

I want you to love me.

No really, I want each and every one of you to love me.

I want you to buy what I’m selling.

I want everyone around me to see what I want them to see 

And I simultaneously want them to see me and not see me. 

I want you to see how great I am but I don’t want you to see me weak.

I want vulnerability. But I want it on my own terms, 

Administered in small doses not big enough to scare me or make me feel exposed. 

I want control. And I want you to love me.

I want the truth to be sexy.

I want people to listen to me when I speak 

Even though I know most will walk away and reject me.

I want you to buy what I’m selling.

I want everyone to believe that their words don’t hurt me. 

That I have an umbrella for unkind remarks 

And they just drip down to the ground around me 

And I don’t lay awake at night thinking about how

Some guy told me “no one will ever love you because of what you believe.”

I want vulnerability—God, I need it! 

But every time I’ve tried it I’ve been betrayed by it 

And I’m starting to wonder if it’s a good idea after all. 

But I still want you to love me.

No really, I want each and every one of you to love me.

I don’t even really want you to know me, 

I just want you to know the me that I show you 

And I want to show you the me that’s brave enough

To get behind this microphone and show you myself.

But sometimes I don’t even know myself 

And you can’t show someone something you don’t know. 

And I want to show you how strong I am!

And how thick my skin is and how

I don’t lay awake at night thinking about how

Some guy told me he wished I was pretty, cause then he would be with me.

I forgot all about that.

But I want you to love me.

I want you to prove wrong every person that’s ever left me 

And I know that’s a lot of pressure to put on you and I’m sorry.

But you are all gods to me and I need you to come through for me.

I’ll worship you if you worship me, 

Cause if somebody doesn’t approve of me 

Then I don’t know who I am, 

And half the time I don’t know who I am. 

But I still want you to love me.

And I want vulnerability.

And I want you to buy what I’m selling.

But I am selling nothing dressed up as something.

I am selling an empty shell of who I really am 

Because who I really am is too scared to show you myself. 

And sometimes I don’t even know myself

And I start to believe all the lies I’ve been telling everyone else

About how strong I am

And how I don’t lay awake at night thinking about

How I don’t lay awake at night thinking about 

How many different times I have been made to feel that 

Who I really am is not enough or too much. 

But I know if you don’t know me then it’s not really love. 

And I want you to love me.

No really, I want each and every one of you to love me

And I want you to know me for who God made me to be. 

And he made me to be something I’m still learning to be ok with 

And I hope that’s ok with you.

I hope the back and forth I put you through isn’t too much for you

And I hope you stick it out with me if I stick it out with you. 

Cause I want vulnerability. 

I want you to know me and I want to know myself 

Enough to get behind this microphone and show you myself.

And sometimes I still don’t know myself

But I am myself because you are yourself and God is himself 

And we are all connected to everybody else— 

We are images of God trapped in these shells 

Trying so hard to show ourselves to somebody else 

And hoping it doesn’t backfire.

And every time it backfires we do it again and again and again

Because that is what it means to be human: 

To trust that showing you who I am is worth the risk. 

And I hope it is.

credits

from Dichotomized, released 01 February 2013 by emilyjoypoetry.com

may you not forget

may you trust God that you are exactly where you are meant to be.
may today there be peace within.
may you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith.
may you use those gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you.
may you be content knowing you are a child of God.
let this presence settle into your bones, and 
allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love.
it is there for each and every one of you.
:: St. Teresa of Avila ::

He knows the way ahead…

Insight from Corrie ten Boom (taken from quotes off the Facebook page baring her name)

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There is no panic in Heaven! God has no problems, only plans.

Some knowledge is too heavy, you cannot bear it…your Father will carry it until you are able.

And our wise Father in heaven knows when we’re going to need things too. Don’t run out ahead of Him.

Love is larger than the walls which shut it in.

When I try, I fail. When I trust, He succeeds.

This is what the past is for! Every experience God gives us, every person He puts in our lives is the perfect preparation for the future that only He can see.

Is prayer your steering wheel or your spare tire?

Faith is like radar that sees through the fog- the reality of things at a distance the human eye cannot see.

I remember one occasion when I was very discouraged (in the concentration camp). Everything around us was dark, and there was darkness in my heart. I remember telling Betsie that I thought God had forgotten us. “No, Corrie” said Betsey, “He has not forgotten us. Remember His Word: ‘For as the heavens are high above the earth, so great is His steadfast love towards those who fear him.’ I would like to share that ‘There is an ocean of God’s love available – there is plenty for everyone. May God grant you never to doubt that victorious love – whatever the circumstances.’

Faith sees the invisible, believes the unbelievable and receives that impossible.

Worry is a cycle of inefficient thoughts whirling around a center of fear.

It hurts when God has to PRY things out of our hands. Hold everything in your hands lightly, otherwise it hurts when God pries your fingers open.

In darkness God’s truth shines most clear.

You can never learn that Christ is all you need, until Christ is all you have.

Any concern too small to be turned into a prayer is too small to be made into a burden.

I discovered that it is not our forgiveness any more than on our goodness that the world’s healing hinges, but on His. When He tells us to love our enemies, He gives along with the command, the love itself.

Trying to do the Lord’s work in your own strength is the most confusing, exhausting, and tedious of all work. But when you are filled with the Holy Spirit, then the ministry of Jesus just flows out of you.

Worrying is carrying tomorrow’s load with today’s strength- carrying two loads at once. It is moving into tomorrow ahead of time. Worrying doesn’t empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength.

 

 

 

periods of transition reveal

It’s been a good summer.  Not easy by any stretch of the imagination.  But good.  Good because it has had good moments sprinkled through it.  But mostly because in being stripped of so much, God has revealed so much truth to me.  About Himself.  About Me.  About life.  Periods of transition reveal so much of the layers of un-holiness that lie within us.  There are hard questions that sometimes don’t have answers.  But more than ever, I believe that nothing in our lives happens without a purpose because of how much God longs for our holiness.  Ever since we’ve moved, I’ve felt God asking me to praise Him.  Even when it felt like blank darkness, to simply worship.  I needed to learn to praise God because of who He is, not because of what He does, or the prayers He answers, or the way I sense Him in my life

Entry from Michelle Beachy’s Website