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An Apology

“Apology: a reasoned argument or writing in justification of something, typically a theory or religious doctrine”
Oxford Dictionaries via Bing Translator  

I have no formal artistic training. I loved drawing as a child, but figured out very quickly 1) there were others who were much more natural visual artists and 2) there were other things I was better at. A couple years ago, I took a few community center courses in observational drawing and tried my hand at watercolour. In the last year or so, I have fallen in love with the Urban Sketch movement as a daily practice and method of visual journal keeping. Urban Sketching emphasizes the process of being creative and making art, rather than on the finished product.

Words are my comfort. I trained as a playwright, and have been preaching for over 17 years. Crafting words comes as naturally to me now as breathing. I trust my writing process implicitly. If I show up to my prayer table and my desk at regular intervals, I may get confused, I may get lost, I may get fearful, doubtful, and frustrated, but the message will always find me on Sunday morning.

Not so with sketchbook and watercolours.

Doing “art” daily is a new practice. One that has challenged me at my core. I post many of my “experiments” on social media, calling them my “daily doodles” to make light of my efforts. However, each time I sit down to the blank page I hear the judgements: “You’re not good enough,” “Who do you think you are?” “You’ve bitten off more than you can chew,” “You’ve started another project doom to find itself in the closet of unfinished projects,” “You think THAT is art.”

The “art” isn’t the finished product, but the practice of sitting down again and again with doubt and fear and faithfully marking the page.

I have discovered, it isn’t just the bad stuff that we tuck away in the shadows of our heart, but perhaps also our deepest joy, because confessing our deepest joy makes us vulnerable to our deepest disappointment. In the spirit of Marianne Williamson, with fear, joy, vulnerability, and heart I offer you this Lenten Devotion featuring my own daily doodles.

Love in Christ,
Rev David  

Our Greatest Fear
—Marianne Williamson

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous,
talented and fabulous?

Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There's nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other
people won't feel insecure around you.

We were born to make manifest the glory of
God that is within us.

It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other people
permission to do the same.

As we are liberated from our own fear,
Our presence automatically liberates others.