Art is the gift of giving ourselves…

art is a the gift of ourselves - original art by duane toops

We long for sanctuary. We long for community. We are each, in our own way, found deeply in the throes of the vast and furious longing for home. But sanctuaries are built. Communities are created. Home is something we make.  These are all things that are founded, rather than found. They do not arrive to us fully formed and ready at hand. They require time and patience, and they come with the understanding that we can not be patient alone.

We are each blindly searching the dark in the hopes of touching something unknown. Art, religion, poetry, and spirituality are means of inhabiting the longing for home that abides in our experience of mystery. They each demonstrate that, although we have managed to put our hands on some small part of the infinite, we are still inescapable of fully understanding our own experience on our own. We need community and fellowship, discourse and dialogue, deeply rich conversations and compassionately wide-open hearts.

Coming home is a continual process. Home is not the final product that we make, but rather home is what we make while we are in the process of making. Home is the place we make for welcoming.  It is the place we make for welcoming the arrival of the unexpected. It is where we welcome the release of our expectations, and where we welcome the mystery and wonder of belonging. It is where we are welcomed and where we are welcoming.

The word “welcome” is used to describe “one who is relieved to be relinquishing control or possession of something to another”. To welcome home and to be welcomed home is to relinquish the possession and control of ourselves and to give it as a gift to another; a welcoming gift that irrefutably changes both the giver and the recipient.

All art is about coming home. All art is about coming home because all “Art”, as Seth Godin says “is a personal gift that changes the recipient.” All art, God in goes to say “must contain an element that’s a gift. Something that brings the artist closer to the viewer, not something that insulates one from the other.”

All art is about being welcomed home because all art is about creating a space in which we are welcomed into the gift of giving ourselves away…


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