Words That Motivate

 

"Always we begin again." -from Rule of St. Benedict

These words always cause me to take a deep breath. They are permission to breathe. They are also motivation to persevere. Life needs a healthy dose of both.

I was given the prompt a couple days ago to inspire creativity. I am taking an Art Journaling as A Spiritual Discipline course within Story Sessions community. The course is a small gathering, which lends itself to more contemplation because of the relative quiet. For me, having quiet spaces gives me room to spread my arms and stretch my heart toward growth- spiritually and creatively. I am sorely in need of these things. I fell into that trap of the cycle of "just one more thing" that never ends. I did not give my soul leave to be nourished, and now, I thirst.

I thirst for air. I thirst for solitude. I thirst for the music of silence that speaks new words into the eyes of my heart. I created my own desert, and now I am in search of oasis, or perhaps the other side of wilderness. Wilderness may be a bit faddish right now, but there is no reason to stay there when the spirit is being called into the garden of delight. And Lord knows, truly knows, I need a garden to survive. I need a variety of life surrounding my own life. Not in a noisy, over the top, decadent way. More in the sound of a gentle lapping at river's edge heard from my perch of solitude on the branches of a towering tree in full summer foliage.

In my daily reading from Simple Abundance, I came across this lovely quote: "Study the cycles of Mother Nature, the garden whispers, for they correspond with the cycles of your soul's growth. Quiet your mind. Rope in the restlessness. Be here. Learn to labor. Learn to wait. Learn to wait expectantly." -Sarah Ban Breathnach

Sometimes the only way to find this kind of rest is to let go of a few certainties, take on the heart of a child, and begin again. I must step into the unknowing with trust in a divine hand being there to guide me, fully believing that good gifts, treasures, and delights await a heart open to receiving.

So this week, I take a first step (again) into creating art without self-judgment. It doesn't have to impress anyone. It simply has to bring life, freedom, and joy. A fresh start; one that each of us must take many times over in our lives. Because "always we begin again."

 

 
Jamie Bagley