...When His Design We Dare to Leave! Or - "Life's Tapestry - What Are We Weaving?"
Or, perhaps, the question should be, "Who is doing the weaving of our lives?" And how well have we cooperated with His design? We have recently become aware of this weaving of His, and are trying to be more consciously cooperative. But seriously, He is making something. And I am not sure it really matters all that much whether we are conscious or not, as much as whether we choose to submit to His design when we do have moments of awareness.
Many threads of past and present events have begun to weave together into our current experience! Which prompts me to wonder, are they making the pathways that will lead to the future? All of them are touching the creative arts in some way, all of them calling to that creative thread within us - all of them wanting to make a withdrawal of some kind, I feel. But how? And why now? That is the mystery.
In yesterday's blog I spoke of people, whose paths we've crossed without even knowing it, who are now coming into focus in a pivotal way. Folks who were little more than a blur in the background of photos, not focused in on, because they played no part at all, in our existence at the time. But who now have become the center focus of the lens which seems to be capturing this part of our lives for posterity - many people from many varied walks of life, many different cultural and economic stations in life, all who were once strangers, but are now confidants or spiritual influences in some way - who have come into focus at a very crucial time, at what appears to be a very pivotal cross roads.
But even more than people, there are also, as I said, creative venues resurfacing - things which stir the creative deep within us! For example, there have been movies, which profoundly touched something deep within us - back in the day - at the time we watched them - so long ago, but whose influence seemed to pass for a season, or may have even seemed almost repulsive at times! Yet they seem to be suddenly calling out to us, almost demanding to be re-watched - alluding to a very specific purpose and meaning!
And it is not just one or the other of us. Both of us, Gene and I, are having these urges - many times simultaneously - which, anyone who really knows us knows, is a big deal. Old musical influences seem to be resurfacing, the performers, the lives they lived, and the music which they made, also seem to be calling to something which they left behind in us, something which seemed so inconsequential or non-noteworthy then, but which have seem to have deeply significant meaning to us or for us now. Early literary influences, both the writers and the books they wrote, seem to be re-asserting themselves into our paths again, demanding to be reviewed. And in reviewing them - the lives and the books - we see deposits which they have also left, which altered something about our character forever, and of which we hardly took note of at the time! And now they seem to be wanting a return on their deposit - they seem to be calling on us to produce something spiritually significant - as though it is now our turn to make a deposit to the world - perhaps to their credit. These days each strand seems to come alive and vibrate, much like the strings on Gene's ovation! Calling attention to themselves, as if to say, see, I am here, and this is what it means!
It is as though the "stew" that has been our lives, which has seemed very much on a back-burner for so long that we were sure the cook had forgotten about us, and that we would just cook dry (or maybe had already done so...). It seems, however, that our existence, that has been so very low-profile, and seemingly inconsequential - may be reaching the point of doneness, perfection, where it is now, finally, worth being served up for the good of the body. It is as though all those influences, like spices and seasonings, have been added to the character which God had put into us from the beginning of time, to bring out the subtle flavors that make us the individuals which God designed us to be! The wine of His Word, the Oil of His Spirit, the Salt, all combine - keeping us from being bland and lifeless, bringing out the unique qualities that make what He has put into us desirable! Making it very rich and nourishing to the spirits of His beloved creatures. He does not want His Gospel presented as a cold, hard, marketing strategy, nor does He want a sappy, watered down, passionless, religious rhetoric! He wants a vibrant, living, passionate testimony of who He Is, that is daily painted, sculpted, written, played, sang, acted, or woven for those hungry - desperately starving - to see His creative Love and Anointing - in a living way!
That is why creative beauty touches us all so deeply in our souls. I sense that we must be more careful what we are feeding our souls - since it will likely come calling on us later on! For good or evil, the deposits which we have made, or allowed to be made, in us come back to us, insisting that we pay the interest on their deposit within us. If we have chosen life and beauty, then that is what we will find when we open up the wells of our souls, a lovely aroma of worship for who He Is! However, if we have chosen craven lusts, selfish, empty-headed death - then the stench of the rotting garbage will humiliate us when that time of opening up to give an accounting comes.
The value of aging, I am discovering, is that the things that matter less (or not at all, such as outward beauty) begin to fall back, so that the things that matter most can have their proper place of importance. We can waste that advantage of course, by devaluing it, by continuing to push and placate things that actually matter very little, if at all, to God, and which will matter so very little to us in the light of His eternity! Or we can maximize them, by abandoning those bullying plagues, those insistent demands of the flesh, to the fires they deserve! And then, looking forward - and putting our hand firmly into His - step out with Him on the final adventure of becoming who He has wanted us to be all along! That kind of freedom does take a rare courage. But, if the right choices have been made all along (or if proper Teshuvah has been made), then you find that it is there - just waiting for a chance to be used. And, to your surprise, you may discover that it was hiding there all along.
If we have made God the true center of our existence, if we have allowed Him to weave His beautiful tapestry into our lives, then we can truly say that we are NOT just getting Older, but that we are also getting BETTER! Diamonds are not made overnight, and certainly can not be made without intense pressure. But when they are dug out of the earth and fashioned by a master craftsman their worth is of great value. So it is with God's handy work. Ever further up, and ever further in - to His limitless Grace and Power! Ever new vistas to climb, new worlds to explore. Whether going into Him, and the infinite mysteries of His Word - or out into the ever expanding worlds of His infinite universe - we can never run out of unexplored territory! God is nothing if not an adventure!
If you have come to this place of transition - that feels like death - hang on - resurrection comes to rescue us, if we do not faint! But it may help to take stock of our lives, to stop and ask, what am I weaving my life out of? And who is it for? If we do not like the answers then we must make Teshuvah, we must return to Him, it is never too late to get in on His design! L'Chai'm! To Life!