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There is probably a perfectly reasonable for everything that seems miraculous.  I mean, we may look at a sunrise in sheer awe at its splendor, maybe even congratulating God on a job well done, while another may consider the science that went into it and dismiss any attributes of faith altogether.  Or, in seeming answer to prayer, a cancer patient may be declared cancer-free while God’s people proclaim His faithfulness, and all the while we know that chemo therapy can do wonders.  And when the wandering child returns home after months or years of rebellion and familial aloofness, we say God is good and credit Him with the reunion.  Did the child just grow up and gain a new, adult perspective?

Are we naive?  Are we gullible?  Have we been so indoctrinated in the church that we have lost our senses?  Come on.  Think!

When I go to a movie, and I’m talking about a really well-done movie, the kind that takes you to another place and causes you to forget where you are and who you are…  When I go to that kind of movie, I come away thinking of all the creativity that went into it.  Writers, actors, directors, cinematographers, make-up artists, set decorators, costumers, foley artists – everyone executing their craft with excellence.  Where did that come from?  I come away thinking about that.  It’s amazing — the talent, the teamwork, the human capacity.

When a teacher is able to reach a child, to get her to understand a principle, to gain her trust and build confidence; when a businessman takes an unpopular stand, one that will cost his business and his colleagues profit, but one that will take care of their employees and customers; when a friend is able to forgive; when a father provides for his family despite the long hours and hard labor required, these are noteworthy.

All of these things, from the sunrise to the sacrificial life – all of these things are what God has put into creation, into humanity.  There are explanations.  There is chemo therapy, there is education, there is human decency.  But dig deeper.  Don’t stop there.  Look behind it all.  Where did it come from?  Who is behind it?

I think, by the very fact that things can be explained, that what some would attribute to God others would call natural phenomena – (how can I say this?) – to me, that is just another demonstration that God is in it.  He is so involved in all of life that we are accustomed to things as they are, things as He made them to be.  The very fact that some deny Him is the reason I believe.  He is behind everything, and we are so used to seeing Him that we no longer recognize Him.

May our eyes be opened.  May we all have eyes to see.

 

 

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There was a time in my life when I began to question everything.  I suppose that was characteristic of my generation.  During this particular era, I questioned the place of art and creativity, and my responsibility to make good use of time and resources. 

So I began to wonder about all sorts of things.  I was rapidly growing toward a very utilitarian view of life, and wanted to have a practical reason for doing things.  This, of course, leaves very little room for fun or relaxation, and though it was before the term “multi-tasking” was ever conceived, I would have relished the thought.

It can make you crazy.  You can’t plant a flower garden without thinking that vegetables are much more useful.  You can’t spend time decorating a room without realizing you’re not actually accomplishing anything worthwhile.  You can’t spend time with a friend or enjoy a hobby without wondering if there’s something else you really should be doing.

Then I came across this book.  It was written by Edith Schaeffer and it’s called Hidden Art.  It has since been entitled The Hidden Art of Homemaking, but I like the former name better because it really is applicable to everybody, not just homemakers.

The premise of the book is very simple:  We are created in the image of the Creator, therefore…  (you got it) we’re creative!  How can we argue with that logic?  But we do, don’t we?  How often do we hear someone, maybe even ourselves, say, “Oh, I’m just not creative.”  Here’s the thing:  we have to expand our definition of creativity.  It’s not just about painting or music or making up recipes or writing or decorating.  It’s also about seeing things in different ways, about being thoughtful, about innovation.  It covers many, many things in life.  It’s all around us, and all through us.

And here’s what else Edith says about creativity:  when we exhibit it, we exhibit the very nature of God. He is pleased and honored when we’re like Him.  It’s very freeing, really.  I can be who He made me to be, without guilt, without restraint.

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