As I was in the shower meditating on what I had just read in Elizabeth Gilbert’s book on creativity, “big magic”, I was concurrently thinking about how it was “time” for baby number 2.
Yet, the recent news of a friend’s friend’s second child being born wth Down syndrome (after their first child being born a genius) plagued me with fear. What if, after having such a wonderful first child who was perfect in every way- Aletheia, if we got pregnant again and our second child had a disability? What if our second child wasn’t as perfect ?
This ties in with my recent fight with the fear of failure.
You see, I am about to show my art in a small gallery near our place. For the first time, a whole series of my art would be on display for people to buy. I panicked at the thought of prices and which pieces to show – to the point where I had an anxiety attack whereby the nerves in my hand started to make my hand hurt. It took some “stress away” oil and much praying to calm me down but thank God that pain went away.
The thing is, what if it doesn’t sell? What if people don’t like my art? What if I feel rejected? Having done Hadasity for years and having built a relatively “successful” business in selling my craft ( in that what I make, sells), I have recently felt myself being attacked with the lie that how creative I am and who I am as an artist is defined by whether my work sells. I am so thankful that the pollution in the air of these thoughts have been cleared for me amongst other things – but the point He was trying to make in the bathroom boiled down to this – who says ?
Back to my thoughts (in the bathroom). I was thinking about making “baby number 2” and the “what ifs” about baby not being perfect when I felt like I heard God telling me – who is to say that what he has created and will give me will not be beautiful? Who is to say that his ART, his creation in us isn’t good? Who says?
Just like the abstract art I have been creating and that I have been thinking about; Just like how someone might look at an abstract piece of work and think it looks like child’s play, worthless, or even pure nonsense – some might see the beauty of it and buy it for a million dollars.
It’s puzzling why it can mean so many different things to different people – but I realized that art sends a message and it evokes emotions. Sometimes we can’t understand why, but it speaks to us. But maybe not to all, and maybe not to anyone else but the creator – and that’s okay.
Who says? I felt God say in the bathroom. If a child born doesn’t seem to fit perfectly in the mound of “fine art”, but to God is “abstract art” – in the sense that he sees the beauty and has different ways and strokes in how he is bringing out the message and emotions in that piece, who is to say the art is not good when he is the first and original master artist, creator and gallery owner and collector in the world? He paid the ultimate price and out the highest bid on each and every artwork that he has created, molded, painted – and every piece is beautiful and wonderfully made – he thinks so!
Beloved if you have been struggling with these same thoughts of failure and fears, lets eliminate those lying voices ( and I am talking to myself right now). The truth is that, Your identity is not in how successful you are in your craft, your job, even how good a mother and wife you are.
The truth is that your identity is in that you are a beautiful work of art, created by a master craftsman who happens to be your dad. The truth is that your identity lies in that you are a child of God – and that might seem like it can’t be all that is important – but it is. Because it is from that identity that allows for all the good gifts and things that you need and want (that you don’t have to strive and struggle in fear for like an orphan) to flow through when you know who you really are and what you already have.
The truth is that You (and every child and human being born in this earth) are a work of Art.
You’ve been sold, and you’ve been collected.
You’ve been appreciated, you have been deemed worthy of a high price. You have been called wonderfully and beautifully made.
“Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out; you formed me in my mother’s womb. I thank you, High God—you’re breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! I worship in adoration—what a creation! You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you, The days of my life all prepared before I’d even lived one day.”
Psalm 139:13-16 MSG