I always read Jo-Anne Berthelsen’s weekly Blog post. We’ve never met, but I laugh when I see she’s often touched on subjects similar to what I’d already planned to say in my own fortnightly post on here! Maybe God wants to say something special when he’s giving us the same thoughts?
So I wasn’t surprised to see Jo-Anne’s post today about her church’s Art Display. What amazing creative contributions there were from members of the congregation. Before I read her Blog post, I’d been writing something about my own work; I’d even had the thought of contributing it to the Auction at my church’s Missions Dinner. It was also at threat of being cancelled due to a COVID lockdown. My work was a cushion cover, and I was so pleased with the way it had turned out.
Creativity is a personal thing, but I often feel guilty about being proud of my limited efforts when I know any ability I have is a gift from my heavenly Father. But then I remembered how God, when he’d finished creating the world, sat back and rested on the seventh day. He looked at all he’d done, and exclaimed, ‘That’s very good!!’
I’ve often had failures, and a few surprising successes, such as the cushion-cover pictured here. It began as a photo of an iris in our garden. I originally planned to give it away, but not many people I know have the right colour scheme in their home to suit it. It lay in a pillowcase for years, awaiting my decision on its future owner. I wanted to give it to someone who’d appreciate my work! I knew I shouldn’t be proud, so that attitude took a bit of the shine off it.
But one day I was thinking, If God can be proud of his handiwork, maybe I can too? Since he’d given me that gift, supposing I could use it to show my own ability as well as his, would I do it? I’d never thought of it like that before.
What if God had surveyed the lovely scene before him on that seventh day, and said, ‘Well, I made all this! I’m God, after all’. No, he delighted in it, every bit of it! So that’s what I’ll do. As long as I don’t yearn for praise about it being my own work, it will be okay to share the pleasure with him, don’t you think? Why should we have a false humility about everything we do? Or is it alright for me to say, like God, as I look at my purple iris cushion, ‘I think this is beautiful’, and delight in it?
Not everyone has the same creative taste, but I do wonder about God’s criteria when I see some of the creatures he made! Take the blobfish (right) which has been described as ‘aesthetically-challenged!’ But, as someone said, ‘their mother loves them!’ And so does God. My own mother once told me she and Dad thought I was lovely! While I have no delusions about my own beauty, now I’m older, most of the time I don’t mind what I look like!
I think the people who generously entered their lovely work in the display at Jo-Anne Berthelsen’s church, can be proud of their creations. I’ve enjoyed seeing them online; every contribution has a beauty of its own. You can check them out here: 2021 | mysite (pbcartinstallation.com)
Now I have one more question for you: Who overheard God saying, ‘It is very good’, and recorded it for us? I believe he said it for himself!