I've been thinking about that a lot lately.
Is this my calling?
Why do I sew and share my craft? Is it what I'm supposed to be doing? Am I honoring God with all that I do?
Those are some of the questions I battle with and I'll share a few of my random thoughts that have been bouncing around. Because I think in a way, that this is my calling and that I am doing exactly what I'm supposed to be doing. But I guess I feel like at times, I need that "justification" as to where I am, today, here, now.
Alright, let's start a few steps back. When I started my career in law enforcement (yes...I was a police officer for 12 years. A federal park ranger, state and municipal as well as a deputy sheriff) I knew that THAT career was my calling. And it was. At the time. I knew, as I still feel now, that I did make a difference. I know that I was put into the path, into situations, for a purpose. That my presence, my actions, my words made a difference. At that time - they told a child that it wasn't her fault that her parents were hurting each other and that she had to stay with other family members while they worked out their problems. They comforted family who had lost a loved one in a car crash. They told drug addicts and theives that doing something bad was different than being a bad person. That just because you did something bad didn't make you a bad person and you always had a chance to start doing right, right now. I prayed a lot then. And now. But I remember saying a lot of silent prayers back then, hopeful that the bad I saw would somehow come back around to good. I knew that what I was doing at that time was my calling.
And I felt the time my calling started to change. For my family. When my kids kissed me goodnight one night as I headed out the door to work a midnight shift and they told me, "Don't let the bad guys shoot you Mom", I knew I was done. Because I knew that my calling to be their Mother was stronger than "saving the world" and I knew that I was ready to let somebody else take a turn at getting all the bad guys. I felt God molding me from one step of my life's journey to the next.
I now work in higher education for environmental studies at a HUGE university. And it's my job to help students figure out just what they can achieve and what is available to them. It is highly rewarding that my job involves "lightbulb" moments. You can literally see the excitement brewing and the passion rising when a student hits on just the right niche and starts to grow, and they start seeing the difference they will make in the world.
But even that, I don't think is all I'm called to do. From the time I was big enough to hold a crayon in my hand, I loved art. Before I even knew what art was. I loved color. And lines. And textures made from paints. And the ability to just create. And to cut up pieces of paper. And glue them back together into something new. I have watched my own children have just that very same experience with art and I can see, that it is a God thing.
So, art doesn't save lives.
It doesn't mend broken families.
It doesn't change people from bad to good.
Not like working in law enforcement or for the environment or in higher education.
But it sorta does.
I guess I look at it this way. There is so much love in art, in sewing, in crafting. It's spiritual and peaceful. It makes you think. It makes you feel. It makes you use your imagination. It makes you stop and slow down. It expresses emotion. It says so much without using a single uttered word. I love that about handmade.
Inspiring others in their own art, in sewing, in crafting. To find peace. To think. To feel. To use their imagination. To stop and slow down. To express emotion. Finding that in yourself, can save a life, can help to mend a broken heart, it can change something bad to something good.
That encouraging others in creativity brings us all closer, to each other and to God.
I think that sharing something we make with our own two hands, telling a story, our story, in paint, in fabric and in thread, in paper and so much more, honors God. It honors each other. It shows love. I think it's a calling we all have within us. It's part of the beauty that makes our lives so much more valuable.
At least that's what's been rattling around in my head this week...