I will thank the Lord with all my heart as I meet with his godly people. How amazing are the deeds of the Lord! All who delight in him should ponder them. Psalm 111:1-2 NLT

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Splattering Art with Blood, Sweat, and Tears


Sometimes I get so disgusted with myself. Here I am in the middle of a difficult decision--one that could either help or hurt someone I love--and while I’m praying and pondering, my mind drifts to the novel I’m working on. 
Should I use this question--one that has no easy answer--in my manuscript? Am I just a sick, twisted freak for thinking about writing fiction while I’m stuck in deep mud in my real life?
Or is this what makes Christian fiction enduring? Tackling deep issues--questions that hover in gray areas with no chapter and verse to latch on to?
I’ve always been pretty much a black and white gal. What’s right is right and what’s wrong is wrong. But as the years pile on along with life’s enigmas, I find God teaching me in gut-wrenching lessons that not everything can be stacked in such defining piles.
So I’m back to my original question, and I think I see the answer in the arts through the ages: Michelangelo’s four years of back-breaking work on the Sistine Chapel, Handel’s depression and debt as he composed the Messiah, John Bunyan’s penning Pilgrim’s Progress from prison--the list goes on. The suffering, the grappling, the struggles--all work together to form enduring music, art, and fiction. 
I’m not comparing our work to these masters, but Christian novelists today are no different. Expect to find our manuscripts splattered with our blood, sweat, and tears.

What about you? How is your art splattered with blood, sweat and tears?

2 comments:

  1. Oh, Teri! What an awesome post. Yes, I think it is the blood, sweat and tears that God allows in our life and the way we respond. He allows trials in our lives for different reasons, but I believe one of them is so we can help others who go through some of the trials we do. And when we write stories about men and women who overcome with God's help, it glorifies Him.

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  2. I couldn't come read yesterday, packing to move house, but great and encouraging analogy with Sistine Chapel, etc.
    Yes, some of our projects take that long, but God also works amazing things in us. Thanks, Teri.

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