The desire of my heart

It is every artist’s dream to be able to do something meaningful with their art, and I am no different.

hope sketchIf you have been reading this blog for awhile, then you know that I have been searching for some purpose and meaning to my artwork.

In the last year, my art has become a form of worship for me as I seek God in my creating.  It has become the desire of my heart that other people will be able to connect with my art and see the heart of God.  God has given me this desire of my heart.

A few weeks ago, I shared a couple posts with you about hope. (here & here)

I had been asked to design and paint a mural for the oncology unit of the hospital.  The only requirement was that the painting inspire hope.

I started painting last week.

The opportunity is amazing!  Many people come by daily to see the progress, and I’ve heard all kinds of positive comments!  My best experience painting at the hospital happened yesterday when I could hear an old man grumbling about how much farther he had to walk to get to his room.  The nurse and therapist were trying to get him up to get some exercise.  I heard the therapist say ” your room is just up here.  You can do it. You’re doing a great job.”  Then the little group came around the corner and this patient saw the mural I was working.  Suddenly, he was bright & witty with comments.  For the moment while he paused to chat with me, he was no longer in a hurry to return to his bed feeling tired and achy.

The director wants to create a gallery of murals that will encourage patients to get out and walk around the halls to see them.  I don’t know how many murals that will be in the end, but so far the response has been amazing.
Just a month ago, I was praying that God would use my hands as his own to create art that penetrates peoples hearts.   Now here I am painting God inspired murals to encourage cancer patients.  I feel blessed, and incredibly honored to have this opportunity!

hopeat St. Joseph Medical Center, 6-garden

Dare to dream BIG

897a251cd8c481659abfeed591332e97I’ve been told a time or two that my dreams are too big. The thing that people seem to forget is that my God delights in giving us the desires of our hearts!

I use to dream about working from home as an artist.  I was told that dream was too big.

I use to dream about reaching out to Tibetan villagers through my knitting. I was told that dream was too big.

Now, I dream about seeing the world with my family.  I’ve been told that dream is too big.  It is the cry of my heart to see all that God has created.  I look at my life, which has been full of  LARGE dreams coming true, and I believe that in time, this too will become a reality.

A Bucket List For Autumn

This time of year usually finds me in a panic as I try to squeeze in just one last visit to the beach, one more visit to our favorite ice cream shop & one last camping trip before the air turns cold.  Summer always seems to slip by me so quickly that when September rolls around, I am taken by surprise.  Knowing that it will be many months before it is warm enough to swim in the lake again is always a hard fact for me to swallow.

So in an effort to stop and enjoy the season we are in right now, I’ve compiled a list of all the things that I LOVE about autumn and look forward to in the coming weeks.
Autumn Bucket List

1. Watch Notre Dame Football games at Poppy & Grammy’s

2. Make homemade caramels ~ yum!

3. Pick apples

4. Evening bonfires

5. Knit!!!

6. Rake up leaves & play in the pile

7. Make mulled cider

8. Go to the pumpkin patch

9. Drink Pumpkin Spice Lattes

10. Go on a hike & snuggle in the woods

11. Make caramel apples

12. Burn my Spiced Pumpkin candle

What do you enjoy most about Autumn?

Thoughts on art & sex

michelaneglo-creation1302x649The other night, I found myself at home working on a crochet rug when I began to contemplate. . .

What is God’s purpose for art?

I asked myself, “Why did God create human beings with the ability and the desire to create?”

The first thing to pop into my head was “We are created in God’s image – God is the creator of all things. Therefore, we also create”

Okay, yes – of coarse, but that answer does not satisfy me.  There has to be something more.  When I am creating, I can see inside my soul.  My heart overflows with passion.  I can feel God, and I can hear His voice speaking. For me, creating is a spiritual experience, and I am wondering, what I am suppose to do with this. Does God have a purpose for art? Does He have a higher purpose for MY art? What if there is no other greater purpose than to give me the enjoyment of creating, and Him the pleasure of my artistic praises?  What if art is like sex and it exists only for the sake of passion, as an expression of my soul?

I truly believe that God LOVES to create.  He is creating all the time.  Look around and you can see this is evident. Every child born was first knit together in the mother’s womb by God himself. Every morning & every evening God paints the sky. Every pallet of color that is found in nature is a perfect color scheme.  I am reminded of a quote I once ready from G. K. Chesterton:

10120634-field-of-daisy-flowers  “It is possible that God says every morning, “Do it again” to the sun; and every evening, “Do it again” to the moon.  It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that god makes every daisy separately but has never got tired of making them. . . . The repetition in Nature may not be mere recurrence; it may be a theatrical encore.”

Is it that God so sweetly enjoys creating, that He wanted us to share in this experience with Him? Has he given us this gift simply for the edification of our souls?

Creative Genius

I woke up at 1 am on a Thursday morning.  I was unable to sleep with this unsilenceable notion that God had something for me.  So, I rolled over, turned on the light & picked up my laptop. This is what I found.  It is a speech given by Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love.  As I laid in bed & watched this video, tears streamed down my face as a resonate “YES!” was heard in my heart.  I am not alone in this need to create, & the task of meeting this need is not left to me alone.   I often have a difficult time expressing my thoughts with words, (this is why I am a visual artists), but on this night God gave me Liz.  She has said in 20 minutes what my heart has been trying to tell me, but has struggled to find the words.

Show Me You; a series

I was little when I asked Jesus into my heart – young enough that I still thought of Jesus physically being in my heart.  My salvation was real, I knew Jesus, and grew up active in our church.  I have never known life without Jesus in it.  However, as a teenager, I would wonder about my relationship with God.  I didn’t feel like I had passion in my relationship with Him.  I felt His fire at youth retreats and conventions, but I knew that was different than having passion.  So, I prayed for passion. Fast forward 15 years.  God has given me passion.  It often consumes me.  I feel like a cup that is overflowing, and I’m scrambling around in a frenzy of excitement trying to find out what to do with all of “it”.  “It” is a number things, like sharing God’s love & HOPE with Tibetans through knitting.  Another, is my artwork.  In the past I’ve simply let “it” spill out all over the place.  I don’t know what to do with “it”, so I start talking about “it” looking for direction as I wait to see what God is going to make out of the mess.

Mandy of Messy Canvas shared this statement on Facebook a while back.

“Quite frankly Christians, I’m ready to see you, not your Jesus.  Show me you.”

This status update & the conversation that follows has gripped me in such a way that months later, it still pulls at me.  It has started me down an internal path of wrestling.  I don’t know where the path will lead me, or even what direction it takes me.  When I’ve written my thoughts into a journal I seem to be all over the place in a kind of swirling ball of passion. I know that I have found something that is important, but I am unable to define it.  This single sentence has sparked a flame in me.  It is creating a passion for divine inspiration.  I’m searching for what to do about it as it is still very messy, swirling around in my heart & my head without any definition.

I have started the “Show Me You” series to give myself a place to  work through the swirling ball inside me.  I hope, dear reader, that you will jump in the conversation and offer your own thoughts & ideas to help me in my search for direction.