In the beginning
I regularly get asked to speak to church groups about faith and art. I begin many of those talks with a simple premise. It goes like this…
For me, it starts “in the beginning”. In the beginning God created. Then God made people. In God’s image. What do we know about God by that point? Well, God is creative and God is relational are two big ones that jump out to me. That serves as a starting point for me. It tells me that we are all creative. It tells me that we should do things in relation (for) others. That certainly is enough reason for me to want to make stuff. I’ll add that I find confirmation in this simple theological idea in that when I lose myself in creativity I find joy. I especially find joy when I share that creativity with others.
I see the joy of creating and of sharing the creation in my daughters — especially my 5 year old. She dives into a drawing with 5 year-old abandon. Every drawing or sparkle-glue-blob is then designated for someone. Often it is folded up (wrapped) and presented as a birthday gift (I get my birthday celebrated often as a result).
Occasionally, these drawings get poked with holes or cut up or ripped up and I see 5 year-old abandon in destruction — but that’s the next part of Genesis, right?
For the moment, I’ll take pleasure in the pile of portraits of family members she has been drawing lately — the ones where people are generally sporting tiaras.
What I always ask the groups I talk with is this: what happens? What happens to that 5 year-old abandon? What causes the filters to go up? We’ll talk more about that in another post.