Sunday, August 18, 2013
Our Us-ness for Him
I have a very good friend who is a superb artist.
Her paintings are a joy.
For years she either stopped painting, feeling that she ought to be spending her time in 'more spiritual' ways.
Or, if she did paint, she felt deeply guilty, as though she were somehow robbing God.
Which leads me to my ponderings (from my journal) -
Thoughts about the Vine and the branches . . .
And especially: "By this is My Father glorified, that you bear much fruit."
What if the fruit Jesus is talking about is not just the Galatians 5:22 'fruit of the Spirit'- love, joy peace, patience, gentleness, kindness, faithfulness, goodness and self control?
What if it also incorporates God-given talents, gifts and abilities?
We are His master piece, His work of art: we have been tailor-made, inwardly wired, for the very purposes for which He created us . . .
So, may "bearing fruit" also mean a writer writing; a painter painting; a dancer dancing, a runner running, or a businessman doing business . . . ?
Our discovering our own talents, developing them, honing them, enjoying them and sharing them brings us fulfilment.
It also brings God glory.
Is it biblical?
Well, God gave the Jews the ability to make wealth.
Generally, it comes naturally to them as a nation.
Isn't this an amazement around the world?
And when the Hebrew people had to make furnishings for the tabernacle, God enabled men to accomplish works of great artistry.
They had been slaves, making bricks for the Egyptians, yet they suddenly could make items requiring precision and expertise in accordance with His detailed instructions.
Doesn't this glorify God right up to this day?
Esther's guardian said 'perhaps (she) had been born for such a time as this' - the implication is that she could have been "pre-wired" with exactly the skills and talents that would be needed to rescue her people in the time of crisis.
Don't we marvel at the hidden hand of God through her to this day?
My friend now paints guiltlessly and prolifically
She gets joy from it and feels the smile of God on her when she does it.
I can't help thinking how impoverished the world would have been if Beethoven had felt that music wasn't spiritual enough, and that he shouldn't fritter his time away with it!
Don't people feel something of the divine in his music to this day?
We all have something unique to offer.
I think this sets us free to find what makes our hearts sing, to find the thing that draws us into that "special space" and to know that the He is happy to see our us-ness surfacing in the way He planned.
Like a convergence of our wills with His.