I’ve been feeling the urge to try something new. There’s been a growing craving for growth, learning, stretching the boundaries of my knowledge and skills.
Maybe I gotten too comfortable. Settled into too much routine.
I recently heard that we will never know what gifts and talents are hidden and stored with us until we make a demand on them. That resonated with me because it’s all too easy to think that we can just wait around until new skillsets emerge and make themselves known. Sometimes I’m tempted to feel that exploring an area I know nothing about is a waste of time because I could spend that same time doing something I’m good at. I could spend my time doing something that is likely to lead to a successful result. But that’s not what growth is all about.
Creating something new is a messy process, fraught with periods of failure. It’s about exploring, trying and failing some more. It’s only when we push through new beginnings that we get to enjoy the joy of discovery. It’s only then that we are rewarded with enlarged capacities and expanded opportunities.
This week I’m spending some time with my parents exploring a passion they dearly love..plein air painting. We’ll be working in oils which I haven’t done since college. I’ve also never developed a gift for painting outdoors on-location as my preference has always been the controlled, bug-free environment of my studio, close to the refrigerator, bathroom and air conditioning.
But this week, I’m trying something new…
Our instructor, John MacDonald, a renowned oil painter, has encouraged us to be patient with the process. To mindfully engage in the joy and pursuit of finding our own creative expression. He has challenged us to not expect a masterpiece at the end of the week, as that may or may not happen. The goal is not to walk away with a successful painting; it’s to develop new ways to see and express the world around us which will involve the continual process of discovery.
So here goes…this may be the only canvas I share with you. It’s fresh, new, and brimming with possibility. So is this experience before me.
May you listen to your own yearning for growth.