WARNING...THIS IS LONG!
I'm not very good at listening to directions. That's just the honest truth.
When our son was in Kindergarten, his standardized testing came back and said he had advanced "listening" skills....he followed directions very well....OH REALLY??? See, I was his teacher....and his Mum....and well, I knew better. But dang if he wasn't able to listen and follow directions on that test!!!
If I ever have any really important documents that require a signature, I get The Hired Hand to read them....cause apparently, I don't have very good reading skills either!!!!
I wonder if this isn't the plight of the creative right brainer. I'm not trying to make excuses....not really.....but our brains do work differently. They aren't constantly working analytical problems and doing numbers and working toward perfection. If we color outside the lines....well, for one isn't that what you are suppose to do, and two, who cares!!!
We're sorta that free spirit, fly by the seat of our pants, sing like no one is listening, dance like no one is watching, hope there is a black balance in the checkbook and love like there's no tomorrow kinda girls!
Ok....here's where I'm gonna get deep....so if you wanna bail out now, I understand.
We (being us who love and know Jesus), all go through ups and downs, famines and abundant harvests, joys and sorrows in our walk. I've been walking hand in hand with Jesus for 45 years....and sometimes He just carried me.
45 years is a long time. It's a long time to know someone.
The Hired Hand and I have been married for 34 years. We finish each others sentences. We sigh at the same time. We even speak the exact same words in unison on many occasions. We just know each other SO well, that nothing surprises us anymore.
I really love that about a good long relationship.
If you've followed my blogs for a while (9 years!!! Holy Cow!!!) you know I have had and still deal with many health issues....Lyme Disease and it's company was the worst of it and probably the reason for any of the other. Thank The Lord, I'm on the other side of that now!!!
It's during those times of desperation we are on our knees....as in my case on my face....seeking, asking, knocking. Then when things are good....we are doing that less. Call it human nature....whatever....but I think it's the plight of the human heart. When we're full we don't ask for more.
Although in this case, we should.
I thought I should throw a picture in here soon....so I don't loose you!!!! Trust me, it gets better...the picture that is.
After signing up for I think, 3 year long classes....wouldn't ya know, I have signed up for well....to be honest....I can't remember....but I think at least 3-4 more short classes.
One of them that I haven't counted is over on Jeanne Oliver's site. It's called, Listening, Finding The Quiet. It's FREE! It's more of a Spiritual girlfriend time of women/girls that Jeanne asked to speak on "listening" to Jesus.
I've done my share of listening to others....and I mean nothing disrespectful...because there are some excellent teachers out there...but I'd much rather listen to The Lord and The Spirit....and really PLEASE don't get me wrong...... (SO, I'm sure you're thinking...Pride, she's just filled with Pride. Well, you're entitled to your "opinion" about me, but before you start pointing out the splinter in my eye....you better get the log out of your own. It's not pride....it's a place where I am. After years and years of being too sick to "GO" to church....and truly only being able to trust The Lord for HIS teaching and HIS voice....well, I just prefer it!!!! If there is any Pride....don't fret, I've already confessed it and asked for forgiveness.)
Geeze.....I can't believe I'm being SO honest......really! But as I say....just keepin it real!!!! So, now that we've done that bit of housekeeping.....
There was one gal (and perhaps....just perhaps....it's because we're at the same stage in life....trust me....it does matter), Julie Johnson in week 2, truly spoke to my heart. Not only did SHE speak to my heart BUT The Holy Spirit spoke to my heart through Julie. Spoke and broke.
I wept. And I wept. I got on my face and wept some more. That my friend is where I listen the best. ON MY FACE.
The above word painting was something Julie did in the "lesson" she taught on Listening. I chose Psalm 16 which is one of my favorites......and I started with one of my favorite words....JOY. JOY ALWAYS. Then it was JOY ALWAYS IN THE LORD. IN THE LORD I AM BLESSED ALWAYS. MY FLESH IS SECURE ALWAYS.
On and on it went, until I felt spent and poured out. There is nothing truly beautiful about the picture. It's just words. You don't even have to do this in paints.....just try it sometime on paper. It is amazing as you meditate upon THE WORD, how it will speak to your heart. You are chewing it up and digesting, THE SPOKEN WORD.
After I got finished with my WORD exercise, I thought I'd work "IN THE SPIRIT". I cranked up the music and had a canvas prepped for when it hit me. I'd already laid down the papers, glazed over them and sketched a head and shadowing. I'd left it sit for over a week....just waiting.
I'm working on faces this year....but sometimes a "realistic" face eludes me! Especially things like hair and yes, eyes....I know.
But I decided to also "listen" to another wonderful teacher Annie Hamman who I'll be taking my first class from her soon on FEARLESS EXPRESSION!!! Annie says, it's all about having FUN and it's not about practice, practice, practice! Hey, I'm all for that!!!
Just let go!!! Isn't that the free spirit of the creative right brain anyway!?
SO, I did. I let go and I tried to allow The Holy Spirit to just use my hands for expression. Fearless Expression.
She started to take form.
She started to speak to me.
She started to sing.
I got my hands dirty.
I was beginning to be fearless.
I didn't like the eyes....so I covered them and started over.
The entire time I painted I was thinking of a few Scriptures.
We battle not against flesh and blood....it's a spiritual battle.
He will command His angels to guard you.
So, half the canvas remained in darkness. Half in The Light!
In the end, I felt as if I HAD LISTENED! TO HIM!
Listening to The One who is higher then I.
Trying to stay humbled and honest.