God’s pleasure

It’s no secret that I love beauty. And I love art, whether that’s the written word, a painting, a sculpture, a play, dance – I love all forms of creative expression.

After our Thailand trip, I admit to struggling with my own creative desires. I would love nothing better than to be creative all day, every day, to write and paint to my hearts content. I have created just one piece of visual art since we moved into this house nearly six years ago. I have written only a handful of words on my story in the last six months. And I miss it. My creative side longs for an outlet. I have been keen to get in the kitchen and cook lately, and I only just realised that it’s the need to ‘create’, that this burning desire in me must find some sort of expression.

While I love and appreciate the arts, I feel guilty when I spend time on it myself. There are girls living in such horrific circumstances – how can getting the paints out help them? How does my story benefit anyone?

I used to struggle immensely with creating for seemingly no purpose. If I was going to paint, I wanted it to be for more than just something I put in a bottom drawer. If I was going to write, I wanted it to be an international best seller and not just a story my family read.

Now, I am happy to paint or write for the pleasure of only one or two, even if that’s just me. No, the struggle now is that there are so many people who need helping, that spending time on my arts seems selfish and self-indulgent.

The other day, I heard someone on the radio talking about feeling God’s pleasure when you do something that might not immediately seem to be ‘worthy’ by our standards. I have always believed that the God who created the amazing world we live in is surely the ultimate Artist but it really struck me afresh.

God created us with talents and gifts. He intended us to use them.

So my paintings may never be anything other than something to hang on a wall in my house, my story may never do anything other than provide entertainment to a couple of people…so what? They have served their purpose already, anything else is a bonus.

So the test is – do I feel God’s pleasure when I create? I would have to say yes. Being creative satisfies me in a deep down soul fulfilling way that I can’t seem to get anywhere else.

I feel right and good and wholly alive.

I feel God’s pleasure.

8 thoughts on “God’s pleasure

  1. Not sure what God had in mind for me, except maybe to be an awesome grandmother.
    I don’t paint to please others – though it makes me happy if others like my work. I don’t write to please others – though I am happy if I get an email or comment that says, “Wow” or “Loved this!” There are so many causes. I think it’s important to find ONE cause and get involved, to try to do something to help that cause. I cannot help all people everywhere. But I can make a difference in one cause. I choose to help the military, Wounded Warriors, Cup of Joe for a Joe, and such like. I know others (J.J. Brown and fracking) who support their special cause. I think the point is to pick a passion and put your heart and soul into that passion. If each of us vehemently supported just one cause, what a wonderful world it would be.

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    • Ummmm, pretty sure awesome writing and amazing drawing and painting skills classes as talent! And I totally agree with picking one cause (or two!)…and we all know what I’ve picked 🙂 You are a woman after my own heart xo

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  2. Pingback: Blowing away the cobwebs | Personally Speaking

  3. Comment for susannah

    Susannah – here’s what I believe regarding your dilemma about being creative and wondering if this is the best use of your time.
    If you use your talents and your urge to create, you never know who you might be helping. A comment, a story, a picture – all could give someone the encouragement or inspiration to do something different, or act on an idea. The ripple effect from your work could be amazing.
    Here’s an example. Recently my 6 year old granddaughter heard that a woman she knows was planning to shave her long hair in “Shave for a Cure.” She thought it was such a huge thing to do that she went home and spent all afternoon creating a card, telling her how brave she was. Her family dropped it off in the evening.
    In her blog, this woman said she’d almost changed her mind about the shave, but the card gave her the courage to go ahead, so she raised money towards leukemia research. Who knows how many children and adults will benefit from this?
    Keep writing and creating Susannah! I regularly read your blog and editorials and find them full of wisdom and common sense. Gillian

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    • Gillian, thank you. You are right, of course. Art and creativity are very much underrated as contributing to the well being of society and us individually as humans…a fact I need to remember. Thank you for your encouragement and reminder. Your words have given me more than you will ever know 🙂

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    • And what a truly wonderful story of your granddaughter! What a beautiful spirit she has, with far reaching impact. It is amazing what children will do when we encourage them to speak with their hearts. Could almost become a story, don’t you think? 😉

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