by Christine Sine
Examining God’s doodles with an imaginative mind is a joyful spiritual practice in itself. I watch the river flow around a boulder and think “there are no obstacles in God’s world, just opportunities to choose a new path”. I see it overflow its banks and deposit its life-giving nutrients on the soil and I applaud that God loves to renew and refresh us with with physical and spiritual food. We run into problems only when we confine the river with lees and dams because we don’t want it to change directions. “How often, I wonder do I confine the river of God and try to build impenetrable barriers to its flow because I don’t want God to change my course?” (The Gift of Wonder 74)
This week I have had fun doodling. Some of you may remember that this is one of the practices I talk about in The Gift of Wonder . I was introduced to it by my good friend Kim Balke and I find it to be an inspirational way to look at life and the challenges I am facing from a different perspective. It is also a great stimulus to creativity and a way to open my heart and my soul to the movement the spirit of God.
Doodles begin with chaos
I grabbed one of my gel pens and my art journal, closed my eyes, did a few deep breaths to relax myself and doodled with my left for about 15 seconds. When I opened my eyes I was a little frustrated with the image. My gel pen was obviously drying out a bit and the pattern was interrupted by blank spaces.
But as I stared at it God began to speak. “Like this image, your life is chaotic and messy at times, and even the lines of messiness aren’t clear. You fill in the lines and then add shape and color to bring out its beauty, just as I do in your life, and a little like I did when I created the earth and all that is in it“.
So I started to add color. My first line of dots looked like a question mark. Life’s uncertainties are always before us but sometimes we are more aware of them than of others. So many of my friends are facing uncertain situations at the moment, illness, job loss, life transitions and I want to be able to fix them, but they are not mine to fix.
Question: Are there places in your life that seem chaotic reigns and messiness reigns where God might be beginning a new creation in you?
What do we do with loose ends?
“But I don’t like loose ends” I reminded God, they speak of unfinished business, unfulfilled dreams, uncompleted tasks that nag at my brain and make me feel inadequate.
“Loose ends are a part of who we all are” God reminded me. “It’s only when you pull on them at the wrong time that they unravel.” Wow now that could keep my contemplative mind busy for the next week on it’s own.
Question: Are there things in your life that are unravelling because you have pulled on them at the wrong time or in the wrong way?
Out of chaos beauty can emerge
Now as I look at my completed doodle I am amazed at the beauty that has emerged. There is still a lot of blank space and my fingers itch to fill it in, but God prompts me to wait and sit in silence for a while. I think about my own life, admire the beauty that God has created out of the chaos and messiness, consider the blank spaces I still itch to see filled in and sit patiently(I hope) waiting for the Spirit to guide me into completeness. There is beauty in incompleteness. I am not finished with you yet. Be patient, allow the unfinished shapes to beckon you on to new adventures, new creativity, new revelation
Question: Where are the spaces in your life that you itched to see filled in but sense God is saying wait?
NOTE: The prayer above is part of the series Prayer Cards for the Day, available through the Godspace store.