The wind lashed at my umbrella as I leaned into the force of the gale, determined to complete my morning walk in spite of Mother Nature’s wrath. When I turned the farthermost corner of my journey, I walked past a church. A young choir inside sang, their voices spilling out onto the sidewalk. I stopped and listened, forgetting the weather. Their voices filled my heart with such sweet innocence, that I was transported back in time–before the hurt, before the shame, before my hardened heart.
My heart ached for all the paths I’ve wandered that took me away from God, away from my goodness. I shivered standing there in the rain.
“I have loved you anyway,” God whispered as the tears I was fighting won and chased my regrets down my face.
“What?” I asked, raising my face to the rain.
“I knew you’d break my heart, but I loved you anyway,” God said gently.
“Oh God, how could you?” I could barely get the words out.
“I created you. You’re mine. How can I not love my creation?” He answered.
“I’m so sorry for all of my mistakes. I’m so sorry I lost my way so many years ago.”
“I know you are. I’ve forgotten all about those years. I wish you could forget them too. Tell the others that even though I know they too will break my heart, I love them anyway,” God asked.
“Yes, of course, I will,” I answered.
Here is that message: God wants you to know that He isn’t a keeper of wrongs. He loves you, even when He knows you’ll break His heart. You are still His precious innocent child. No matter how far down the wrong path you have journeyed, you can always turn around and come home, back to His arms, back to His heart.
I dried my tears and pushed on, each step propelling me towards home. I savored the company that I was now aware was walking with me—had always walked with me. “Thank you, God,” I whispered, full of gratitude for a love I can only appreciate, never fully fathom.
Creativity requires the courage to let go of certainties.
Picasso said that the act of creation is first an act of destruction. Its been that way since the very beginning. God called forth the universe and the darkness, the void, was destroyed, forever changed. In its place sprang the heavenly bodies and the myriad forms of life. It is the same with us. When we create something new in life, a new job, relationship, a move, a new way of thinking, new beliefs, etc., we’re destroying the status quo to one degree or another. And that’s the part of creating the future that scares us the most. We have a hard time letting go of our current state of affairs and moving forward. We may fear not knowing exactly what’s ahead.
But move forward we must if we want to live fully. Deeply. It is with faith in God as we understand God, that we navigate the path of the new, for He is the ultimate creator. We go forth with an open mind and an open heart, childlike in our curiosity. We let go of certainties and we allow the future to unfold, much like a flower opens up her beauty to the world, one petal at a time.
Our lives are the ultimate expression of our creativity. We can create amazing journies out of our time here on the planet if we understand and allow the destruction that comes with creation, and the faith to move forward, holding God’s good hand.
I snapped on Shakespeare’s leash and took him for his last walk of the evening. It was delightfully cold; a winter’s night that made me want to hold someone’s hand. Instead, I held a big flashlight, shining a light for us to walk safely in the dark. I watched the little orb of light bob to and fro just ahead of our steps. Shakespeare busied himself with sniffing every vertical surface he passed. We were almost home when something nudged me to take my eyes off the ground and to look up. The dark sky was dotted with blinking stars.
I stopped and stood for a few moments and stared at the heavens. I thought how often I go through life focused on what’s in front of me, unaware of anything else. Had I not stopped and looked up, I would have missed the beauty of the night sky. What else might I be missing by focusing only on my next few steps? There is a bigger picture to my life that I will miss if I don’t expand my focus. Oftentimes, all I need to do is to pause and to look upwards; pause and look to God!