To Find Comfort in the Creative

Watercolor by Donna

Watercolor by Donna

I am a Creative. I find comfort in the creative. I enjoy a variety of things, but primarily I like to write and paint. If I’m in a good mood, being creative brings on the joy even more so. If I have the blues, being creative brings lightness which lifts the heaviness I am feeling. Like Julie Cameron author of “The Artists Way” says, “It is difficult to be depressed and in action at the same time.”

However, I don’t always find comfort in the creative. First, I struggle to write an article or a blog post. Just writing the first paragraph takes a lot of effort and because I’m a perfectionist, I’m usually never satisfied with the end result. Secondly, to pick up a pencil to sketch a design or a paint brush to splash on color can be an effort as well because it will require that this ADD temperament of mine to focus on finishing the project.  And then it’s the mess of the paint supplies, or the pile of books (research material) taking over the dinning room table. My husband has grown to appreciate my messiness and gives me encouragement and comfort to explore being creative.

I have a friend that happens to be a watercolor artist. She inspired me to unleash the “wanna-be-artist” hiding inside. She encouraged me to relax and to find comfort in the creative. She is the most gracious friend that sees beauty in everything that I attempt to paint. She encourages me not to hide my work, but to keep it in view and then paint another one. Always paint one more. Always write one more article.

I’ve asked myself what manic or compulsive hours will I give up in trade for the equivalent time to write, or paint? Time is not free—that’s why it’s so precious and worth fighting for. (Ann Lamott said that. She is the author of “Bird by Bird” as well as many other books.) As a gift to myself, I am saying,”no” to some things so that I may say,”yes” for time to find comfort in the creative.

I once wrote a short post about the photo of my granddaughter sniffing a tulip. She loves to discover all that is creative. Her comfort with exploring a beautiful piece of creation made me wonder what a tulip smells like. It made me notice the tulips.

Finding comfort in the creative is noticing those small details–to be in the world–present and in awe. To thank God, the author of creativity, the designer of all creation for splashing beautiful colors on a blank canvas, called my soul. For writing His words of truth and hope to guide this perfectionist to realize that real comfort in the creative can only be found by knowing the Creator.

Linking up with everyone for Five Minute Friday, where a remarkably encouraging community gathers to write for five minutes. This week’s prompt is: COMFORT
 
There is an Amazon link on this page. If you purchase the book using that link, I will receive a small stipend. 

Develop a Habit of Change

My one resolution for 2013 is:

Develop a Habit of Change

I don’t want to be satisfied with the status quo nor do I want to have a false sense of security with my worldly possessions…to become so blindly contented with my surroundings that I cannot accept change or that I would stop wanting to change.  And that is a scary thought.

Why do I need to develop a habit of change? Because I am easily distracted and truly fear that I will atrophy without a plan to develop a new routine, a new rhythm that will excite a movement towards change.

I recently read this:

“The way you spend the first 21 days of 2013 will set the pattern for how you spend the next 344 days of the year.” ~Carey Nieuwhof

That is really true. And from personal experience,  I know that I must be intentional about developing a habit of change and the best time to start is now.

Here are five areas that I want to improve in…to develop a habit of change:

Develop a Habit of Daily Personal Worship

Developing this spiritual discipline is crucial for becoming mature and equipped. It is not just a religious thing to do. It is a spiritual channel through which God’s glory, grace and truth continually flow into my life. To develop a lifelong habit of embracing Jesus in daily personal worship, I will do this for 21 days and will repeat for another 21 days and another…

Develop a Habit of Mentoring

Establishing a monthly routine of consistently meeting with one or two people to mentor. This will take discipline to set aside a few hours every month to meet with a friend(s). I like seeing the names of friends written on my calendar! On the flip side of this, I need to be mentored as well. I’m very encouraged and blessed to have a friend write my name on her calendar!

Develop a Habit of Organized Journaling

I keep a small notebook handy and carry it with me when I travel (a lot of great ideas come to mind when sitting in an airplane), I tend to clutter the top of my desk with post-it notes (creative ideas jotted down) and I always use the “Notes” app on my iPhone or iPad during meetings. I need a simple solution to stay organized in this area…so I will learn how to use Evernote.

Develop a Habit of Hobby

I will focus on improving skills in two creative outlets: water-color painting and photography. I’ve grown to appreciate the fact that God is very creative and the more I learn about Creator God, the more creative I become.

Develop a Habit of Storytelling

I want to be intentional about telling my children and my grand children wonderful stories about the history of our family. We have been rescued. We are continually rescued.

“Generation after generation stands in awe of your work; each one tells stories of your mighty acts.” Psalm 145:4 (The Message)

“Stories we heard from our fathers, counsel we learned at our mother’s knee. We’re not keeping this to ourselves, we’re passing it along to the next generation–God’s fame and fortune, the marvelous things he has done.” Psalm 78:1-4 (The Message)

How about you? What areas in your life do you want to change? What kind of habits are you developing?