Saturday, July 30, 2011

a little ART SHOW with a lot of LOVE


My name is Jessica. People call me Jessie. I think it’s because it’s easier to say. Or maybe it’s because I played on countless soccer teams with several Jessicas, so Jessie simply sufficed. And simply stuck. But that is all beside the point.

The point is that my name is Jessica. And I am never 100% content. So if I am not content, I am discontent. If I am discontent, than I am yearning, I am aching, I am searching for more. My soul is thirsting.

But for what?

The plethora of color on canvas, of amateur artwork that is vulnerably exposed before your very eyes today, poses this question. The question “what is my soul desperately seeking?”

I paint with a passion to see beyond this tangible world… beyond cultures that poison our expectations of one another… beyond extreme materialism that addicts our youth to a standard of living… beyond seeking self worth in a profession, quality of education, or social status (ok, let’s just sum that up as seeking self worth from a broken world.)

I paint moments in time where I experience raw rushes of emotion. Emotions full of pain and healing. Emotions that encourage the organic process of brokenness, the dire need to surrender. But most truly, I paint moments where I experience Divine grace, where I receive Holy truth, and where beautiful selfless love is poured upon me. These moments are when my soul quenches its thirst.

I don’t think we will ever be 100% content in this world. I believe we can feel genuine peace. But we will always seek something beyond what our measly minds can mentally grasp here on this earth. “If we discover a desire within us that nothing in this world can satisfy, also we should begin to wonder if perhaps we were created for another world”- CS Lewis, Mere Christianity

I pray my artwork can encourage this concept. The concept that there is more to life than this world can ever offer, that eternal life is beyond us. That there is a God, a Source of life who craves to know and love us.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Here. Now.

"When there is no major difficulty to overcome, no vision from God, nothing wonderful or beautiful-just the everyday activities of life-do I hear God's assurance even in these?"
-oswald chambers

Why is it hard to hear God's assurance in everyday activities? Because we are adrenaline junky humans who need highs and lows, who need drama, who need stress, who need extremes to feel as if we are really alive. But I am alive! Right now! As I sit here, typing on my ordinary laptop, having my ordinary cup of coffee on my ordinary couch in my ordinary home in San Diego, as I'm about to get into my ordinary car to drive to an ordinary day at work. It's just so boringly typical.
But And this is where my life is. Here. Now. So what am I gonna do about it? Go through the motions thinking, "Okay God, I wanna be a vessel for You. I want you to use me in every way. I want to know you more. But not today. Because today is not anything special. I'm not feeling the rush to go strike up a little convo with the person on the bus, or to call my Mom and tell her I love her, or to just go into work full of joy despite how mean my coworkers are. Or to just make time to know you, to glorify you."
This is our life. right now. And as I type on my normal computer, on this normal morning, I still want to see God's sovereignty, God's beauty, and God grace as I get in my car and head off to a day of normal work.
Now don't get me wrong, if you know me, I am most definitely an individual who promotes beautiful moments, moments that express passion, and moments of spontaneous creativity. Living life full of crazy beautiful experiences that just make your heart wanna burst because it is overwhelmed with emotion!!
But should we limit God to these moments?

"We have the idea that God is going to do some exceptional thing-that He is preparing and equipping us for some extra ordinary work in the future. But as we grow in His grace we find that God is glorifying Himself here and now at this very moment. If we have God's assurance behind us, the most amazing strength becomes ours and we learn to sing, glorifying Him even in the ordinary days and ways of life." -oswald chambers

Mr. Chambers has inspired me this morning to be bold with all you people who read these things called blogs, to stop waiting for God to do some exceptional thing. He is here, now, waiting for us to have assurance in Him. Even as I fail daily with this concept of constant assurance in Him, I know God is smiling down, excited for me as I keep going and keep desiring to be closer to Him. :)