Creative retreat days using art have provided quiet spaces to reflect on Scripture, be still before the Lord, walk in the lovely grounds and gardens, and paint or use pottery as forms of expression. The days are not for artists only, but for anyone wishing to invite God to show them their creative side. We are, after all, made in God’s image, and He is our Creator!
Janey Patterson writes about her recent day on a Quiet Painting Day at HOD…
We were invited to bring our paints and canvases, but as I work with clay, I asked if I could bring some instead of the paints. Margaret, our leader for the day was very gracious and agreed!
There were three of us attending and it was held in the pottery studio, a wonderful, light and airy space.
When we were given our program, the first line on the paper read,
‘You are seated at the Lord’s table”
Wow! I thought, and I am ashamed to say I don’t think I heard anything after that!
What an amazing concept and my head and heart were busy digesting this and wanting to produce something for His table. I began by rolling out some clay and chose a stamp with branches and indeterminable fruits growing from them. I stamped at pretty random intervals on the clay and as I was smoothing out the clay from underneath to distort the pattern, the Lord said,
“I am the template.”
My aim was then to make this piece of clay into a huge pitcher or jug representing Jesus, from which the life giving water of the Spirit would flow, keeping the spout purposely split to recall the brokenness of Jesus for us and also knowing that this would make the water splash very freely over everyone/thing onto whom it was poured! I would then make a beaker for each disciple. The beakers would have the same stamp/template on each one (being made in God’s image) but the template would be distorted or slashed, nearly rubbed out or overprinted with some other texture showing the markings of each life. Each beaker would have a specific colour and these would match a coloured template on the ‘Jesus jug’. Both beakers and jug would be glazed and then set on a table as an exhibition piece.
No matter what our experience, the opportunity for the Lord’s saving grace is always present.
Margaret was a wonderful quiet presence and guide during the day.
I would encourage anyone to attend this type of day, even if you have no artistic leanings. The Lord’s presence is your inspiration and He will surely bless you as you listen and experiment with your chosen medium.