How is it possible to explain something that is only "seen" by the spirit?…to explain how one "sees" with the eyes of the soul. - Julian of Norwich1342-1416
In reading Julian's words I am prompted to positive thoughts about God and the gift that has been given to me and others. The fragile sweet gift that, at its very least, gives me joy in the connection to my creator and, at its very greatest, a vision to others and glimpses of God through my art. The gift is to see differently and possibly translate for others what is seen. It seems like arrogance at first but I know that that is a lie and can be, and often is, an excuse for myself not to go to the extra effort of putting on canvas or film or internet, the visions that I see in my head that communicate God's depth.
Does God call out to every artist in this way. How many of us heed the call. To do so requires pushing aside so many things of this world that have crowded out His voice and vision in the first place. The crowding leaves a tiny crack, just a glimmer of who He is through the borage of a hundred other voices calling for us to do or be, love or hate, embrace or reject. All the while God is still there, His light shining through this tiny crack. Miracle that the crack is still exposed at all. It may easily be covered up with so many things. A cloth thrown over it to dim the light. Absentmindedly we continue piling on things that don't matter until the dim light vanishes completely and we are left in the dark. Fumbling around I often find myself in the pitch blackness, reaching for things that feel are familiar, seeking comfort in their shapes. Touching the darkened objects I recognize that they are familiar but am astonished to find that they offer no comfort anymore.
Where am I? I realize I am in the dark and turn to search for the crack. Digging through the pile it is an act of sheer will to uncover the crack and see the light again. Pile upon pile I grab handfuls of things I have collected in an attempt to see the light again. Old clothing I wore so comfortably before, I push aside. I sweep away old objects of faith, books and notions hoping to see the glimmer I know is still there. The air is dusty and filled with the smells of things long gone. As I remove piles of debris I can once again see the light. If I can see the light I may be able to widen the crack, pushing aside all the noise that has crowded out His voice so that I can hear clearly. Maybe then I can see by the spirit in order to show others. I truly want to see with the eyes of my soul.
Where do these promptings leave me? There is a place for me to go to be with God and I often forsake it for other things. There is a place that He would give me if I will look past the debris. Unhindered it is like looking through a perfect glass window instead of a crack in the wall. I can create from there. The gift He gives me is there in all its clarity. It is a gift of vision that I can give others. Such is the calling of the artist.