A few years back, I bought a box of Christmas cards and was so moved by the spiritual beauty of the image (and talent of the artist who painted the original) that I went on a search to find her. She didn’t have a website but I found her home phone number. I was hesitant to call (not wanting to invade her privacy), but the thought that I had to tell her how moving her work was, kept coming up. The day that I finally dialed her number, my hands were a little sweaty, and the thought that she would not be happy with my calling her at home, was poking at my brain. After all, my reasoning mind was saying, “Why would she care what I thought?, and she might be more put off by my forward behaviour, than pleased by the call.”
But the feeling that I needed to contact her persisted, so I went ahead and dialed. It happened that she was home, and as I explained to her the reason for my call, she thanked me profusely and told me that she had been doubting if “just doing her artwork” was really contributing to the well-being of this world, and had been questioning whether artwork was needed in the way that food and shelter were. As we hung up, she told me that my call was the encouragement that she needed.
I know that I’ve questioned whether just living my life well, and doing what makes my heart sing, is enough too. I used to think that I had to live a very sparse life, doing volunteer work 24/7 or “giving to the poor” as the only legitimate ways to feel like a spiritual person, but I’ve changed. Giving from a heart that is full of love, creating beauty, doing whatever it is that fills us with life (whether that be working as Mother Theresa did, or creating healing work like the sculptor David Kracov) makes our world a better place.
We are so much more than just bodies just trying to stay alive. We need spiritual food in the form of laughter, smiles and beauty (of all shapes and forms) to remind us of the larger dimension of ourselves. My life, your life, is a walking, talking and breathing work of art that can uplift the world. This weekend, it is my intention to remember this.
“Be who you are, and be that well“. St. Frances de Sales