Thursday, April 15, 2010

Neglect Not the Gift...

Here's something that really tickled me when I was visiting the grandkids and their illustrious parents back in So Cal last weekend. Take a look at this close-up shot of the lovely (though crooked by virtue of photographer incapacity) plaque that hangs on the wall above my granddaughter's bed.

My daughter-in-law, Heather, created this cute wall hanging from a poem I wrote for one of my books (©2004 Susan Noyes Anderson, His Children, Vantage Point Press). I love knowing that she wanted these words of mine in plain sight for Carli to view and perhaps draw inspiration from through the years, as she goes from crafty young girl to artsy teenager. What a neat compliment! Maybe, one day, Carli will even want to read the entire book!! (She's already putting a pretty good dent in the Magic Tree House series...)

The idea of creation is especially meaningful for me. When President Uchtdorf gave an inspired talk to the women of the LDS Church on the topic, I was several degrees beyond thrilled. Years ago, I had taught a Relief Society lesson about every woman's amazing power and gift to make something from nothing...or (at least) relatively little. The notes from that presentation later became a chapter called "Respecting and Directing Your Personal Power" in my book, "Awaken Your Spiritual Power: The Fairy Godmother Isn't Coming" (©1999 Susan Noyes Anderson).

Anyway, the backbone of this lesson was an acronym I created for the occasion. (There's that amazing verb again!) Here's how it goes...

Catch the vision
Request the Spirit
Experiment with ideas (prepare)
Accept inspiration
Take courage (trust your gift)
Express your divinity
© All Rights Reserved

Of course, there was a poem to go along...

The gift is given. Will we make a space
within the cluttered circles of our lives?
As mothers, daughters, sisters, friends and wives,
will we lay hold or run an endless race?

Will we lay hold, or run an endless race...
and, running, lose our vision of the prize?
"Be still," God said. The cup goes to the wise,
for every gift must have its time and place.

For every gift must have its time and place
or be forgotten...and the Giver, too.
Come, let us dedicate ourselves anew.
Receive and magnify each gift with grace.

Receive and magnify each gift with grace.
Create a fertile ground; make room for growing.
We have the seeds, and they are ripe for sowing.
The gift is given. Will we make a space?

One of the things I love so much about blogging is that the gift of creativity is constantly being expressed in language and photos that mirror the use of that gift in each blogger's life. An empty "New Post" page is simply another space where beauty can find a home.

...Which is a perfect segue to this reminder that the giveaway for my 500th post anniversary doesn't end until Saturday night, and you still have time to comment here and win one (or several) chances to take home a few examples of beauty in the form of three special editions of Jane Austen's work or a lovely tote by Ronna. What better way to embrace and celebrate the creativity of others than to accept these tangible manifestations of their considerable gifts?

CREATE. Yep, I love that word.


PS. Don't you the way Joni Mitchell uses notes and silence to create the haunting rhythm of this song? Perfect.


Jess said...

Last night we had youth standards night, and this ties so well with what I learned. Maybe it's that I'm in a better state of mind to learn- I don't know but thanks, Sue, for teaching me something today

Braden said...

Love your acronym! I think being creative (in any endeavor) is when can be close to the Creator and I love those moments.

KC Mom said...

You do have a way with words....and letters. :)
I know I have creativity in my bones and when I fight against it I am unhappy!!

karen said...

I know that when I'm being creative, I'm at my happiest best. I don't get enough time most days, but that's why my new room (when it's finished) will be so great: everything will be within reach and waiting for me to return and pick up a brush or pen (or blog!) Good post - there are so many ways to be creative. Too many people think it always means an artistic endeavor and then they get intimidated. I've seen amazing creativity in all kinds of activities.

Cherie said...

This was a beautiful post Sue. I love the wall hanging and I love it even more because it is your words - That is definately a wonderful tribute.
I too was SO touched by President Uctdorfs words on being Creative and for awhile had the little video clip on my blog. It is inspiring.
YOU definately have a creative gift - Thank you for sharing it!

Darlene said...

Love this post.
Love your creativity.
Love President Uchtdorf.
Love your poem.

Caroline of Salsa Pie said...

I loved this post. So true about the empty "New Post" space. Blogging is a blank pad and an outlet for the combination of so many gifts and talents when used the right way.
Your poem here is beautiful. Also, I'm happy to now have the link to your poetry site. I can't wait to have some time this weekend to read it.

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