Wednesday, November 25, 2015

A New Beginning

Over a year since my last post?!  Oh my goodness!

Life has been a little chaotic and tumultuous for the past year, but the beautiful thing about art is that it always welcomes you back and draws you in.  So, onward to new beginnings...

This post is not so much about what I've been creating, as it is about what I've been learning.  Sometimes is takes a hail storm to see the potential rainbow.

October 2015 in Ocean Shores, WA
Last February my husband and love of my life was diagnosed with metastatic cancer.  Found in five places in his body, we spent more than a month undergoing biopsies, doctor appointments, genetic lab tests, etc to try and determine what kind of cancer and where it was stemming from.  A label of "spindle cell sarcoma" was eventually given, though this is like saying "vanilla" in a world of 31 flavors.  We've been told that when doctors hear hoof beats they are trained to look for horses...but my husband is a zebra.  Though we've also been told this sarcoma is not "curable", we are prayerfully hopeful that it will be manageable for years to come.  We are also open to miracles. 

The positive side is that after 52 radiation treatments over a five month period, he is doing well.  Much of this is about attitude.

Learning Life's Lessons  


From a spiritual standpoint, my faith has never been stronger. 


"The Lord's acts of mercy are not exhausted, his compassion is not spent; they are renewed 
each morning—great is your faithfulness!  
The Lord is my portion, I tell myself, therefore I will hope in him."  Lamentations 3:22-24

We are no different than anyone else with struggles and trials to overcome, except that we have chosen to place our lives in God's hands, the creator of all things.  This doesn't mean that our trials will be taken away—though, gratefully, we are rejoicing now in the answered prayers of healing, we also know that there may come a time in the future when we face the scary news again.  What faith and prayer have taught me in the last eight months is that even through the most difficult times, God is still and always will be merciful and there is always reason to rejoice and give thanks for the day.  If our news was not so good, yes, I could still share the same scripture with you and believe the message wholeheartedly.  Happiness and joy cannot be dependent on emotions, but come ultimately from the peace that only God can give.
This doesn't mean I/we will never struggle with fears or it says above, God's mercies and compassion are renewed each morning, so wouldn't mine need to be as well?  Faith is a daily decision and it takes work, just like lasting relationships take work. 

From an art and business standpoint, taking a step back for awhile has been an opportunity to gain a new perspective on what is important.  
First, not over-scheduling myself—time lost in life's "busyness" can not be gained back.  
Second, stop looking at others and wishing I could do what they do.  I have a dear friend who is exploding with creative ideas, while I struggle to have one bright idea.  But I recently read some great scriptural advice from Christian writer, Max Lucado.  Galatians 6:4 and 1 Peter 4:11 remind us that we need to examine our own strengths and talents and know that we were made to do those things.  Lucado writes,
"No one else is like you!  What do you do well?  What do people ask you to do again?  What task comes easily?  Your skill set is your road map.  It leads you to your territory.  Take note of your strengths.  They are bread crumbs that will lead you out of the wilderness.  God loves you too much to give you a job and not the skills."  (from his new book, Glory Days)
I may never create a masterpiece work of art for a gallery, but I do enjoy teaching and introducing others to the joy of calligraphy.  
And I enjoy creating small pieces of art that make people smile.  
This is my territory—time to stop feeling frustrated about what 
I can't do and celebrate more earnestly what I've been given to do.

Each day is a blessing and we rejoice in it.

As the season of hope and light approaches, new projects are brewing, future blog posts about calligraphy are being planned, and teaching will resume early in the new year.  
Meanwhile, we will continue to take each day as it comes,
hanging on to faith, hope, and love.  
And laughter—how we love to laugh!



1 comment:

  1. “The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.”
    ― William Arthur Ward

    You inspire me!