I have been searching for words since last weekend. I sat across the table from my husband Saturday afternoon (for the first time in several days) and attempted to put together words to interpret the emotions…I had nothing. Nothing. It wasn’t exhaustion I was feeling, though I was tired. And it wasn’t shock, though just a few days earlier I never would have believed how great the weekend was about to turn out. It was more like joyful contentment. There just wasn’t anything to say really. God showed up, He did everything I was afraid to do, He pulled it off, and I was humbly privileged to watch it all unfold.
This past weekend was the Beautiful Life conference with Angela Thomas at our church. Angela emailed me about a month ago and asked if I would be willing to help pretty things up for the conference. I tried for a week or so to convince her that she had the wrong girl, but then I became too excited to not jump in and go for it. Suddenly I was creating artwork that I couldn’t stack and hide in the corner of my art room, and therefore quickly became afraid of what I had gotten myself into.
Once I allowed my brain to catch up with my heart, I knew I wanted to do more than just make the tables pretty. I wanted to somehow artistically create the message that Angela would be teaching that weekend. I wanted to create a woman that God redeems. I wanted to represent what happens when a girl who is guilty, weary, ashamed, alone, and afraid; hides herself in her God that is willing and able to redeem her. I wanted to show how He takes the broken, and makes them beautiful for His glory. What I was really doing was telling my story, with a strong suspicion that there would be others that could relate. And so we created her, and she was indeed beautiful:
There was so much about this process of creating that I want to share. I intend on talking your ear off with the details soon, but just one more reflection for today before I close. Several weeks before the conference I was sitting outside with my children eating a late dinner. The sun was setting and the colors in the sky were so spectacular that we all stopped and noticed. At that moment, I whispered a small request to God before the colors disappeared behind the horizon. I asked Him if He would give me just a grain of sand amount of His creativity for this project that I had quickly approaching…because all creativity really belongs to Him. He is the original Creator; the One that was, and is, and yet to come. All I needed to do was get out of the way and let Him do His thing. So I did, and He showed up, and did His thing…. all for His glory.
More to come later.
All photographs are courtesy of Sharon Clark, the amazing genius behind the camera for Smitten Photography.
If you would like to subscribe to Playing Sublimely, you can click here to do so, or go to the top right hand column of this page and enter your email address.