Thank you so much for checking out this week’s Hope Coach post. I really appreciate it! You may have read in some of my previous posts about my mission to be a strong voice of hope during these challenging days. To me, having hope isn’t about being naively positive or living with fingers crossed for a desired outcome. It’s deeper than that—and way more practical than you might’ve imagined.
A Sculptor Sees Art In A Rock
I’ve been thinking this week about how artists spend their lives creating beautiful pieces out of nothing—a painter starts with a blank canvas, a writer starts with a blank page, a sculptor starts with a lump of clay or a piece of rock. To this “blankness” they add their imagination. They wonder what could become of this empty canvas. Artists are literally following the example of God, who created everything from nothing.
This is what a life of hope is like. It’s realizing WE ARE ALL ARTISTS capable of creating beautiful things. Even from nothing.
But Mark, I’m not an artist, you might be saying to the screen. Maybe it’s true that you didn’t do well in art class. Maybe you don’t have a way with a paintbrush. Maybe you don’t have an easel or a pottery wheel. But…
Regardless of your level of artistic ability, you can always look for the beautiful things that are all around us. The most amazing piece of art might be hidden within a block of stone. Perhaps the art is hidden underneath the gruff exterior of an acquaintance. Hope believes in and looks for the beautiful.
Next level hope steps into the creation process, picks up dirt, a tiny seed, and some water, and believes this combination of simple elements will bring a beautiful flower into existence. We are all uniquely qualified to bring new kinds of beauty into the world.
Let’s Inject Some Hope Into the World
Perhaps you’re frustrated or disappointed with certain aspects of your life or with how you see the circumstances in our culture unfolding. It’s easy to evaluate and criticize—and before long, our identity becomes someone who is always criticizing (even if you’re 100% in the right!). It takes faith-filled courage to make the decision to inject hope into what you may perceive as a hopeless situation, to bring light into the darkness.
I’d love to hear how you are desiring to inject hope into your world—or how you see other people doing it. We need to share these stories with each other!
My life of hope teaches me that there is an incredible amount of goodness and beauty in the world—some of it can be clearly seen, and some takes a bit more work to uncover. But we are surrounded by it.
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You Are A Masterpiece
Author Martin Laird wrote about letting ourselves be sculpted into a masterpiece. He writes, “The practice of sculpting has less to do with fashioning a figure of one’s choosing than with being able to see in the stone the figure waiting to be liberated. The sculptor imposes nothing but only frees what is held captive in stone.”
He then says that we should let go of the need to have our life circumstances be a certain way in order for us to live or pray or be deeply happy. He adds, “With enough of this stone removed, the chiseling becomes a quiet excavation of the present moment. The emerging figure is our life as Christ.”
Isn’t that beautiful? It makes me want to hand over the chisel to God, and just say, “Have your way!” Having that kind of faith is a great way to live hope.
I look forward to hearing your thoughts on this week’s post!
Making It Practical
Find something beautiful, and think about what makes it beautiful. Take a photo with your phone’s camera and then share it. Say something like, “I’m deciding to not focus on ugly things in the world, but instead, I’m going to look for beautiful things.” Invite others to join you! Sharing things we find beautiful with others is a great way to foster hope.
I may not be able to create individual sculptures for people I know, but I am a big fan of baking something delicious and then sharing it, leaving little treats outside people’s door. Sometimes it’s art, sometimes it’s just delicious. (Except last week, when most went into the garbage!)
Write a couple of sentences about how you’d describe hope. Why do you think hope is important? How could an infusion of hope help to make this world (or even just your life) a better place?
Did you know that you can follow a 14-Day Reading Plan to Become A Champion of Hope that I’ve written? Find it here on bible.com or in the Holy Bible app.
Don’t Forget: You can also download the FREE Live Hope Minute mobile app for your phone or tablet and receive a daily audio dose of hope.
I Live HOPE💕💕
Hi (((((Mark)))))…..being among family who are gifted at painting (China Painting, Rosemalling), sewing and yes counted cross-stitch. I am still happy to have done one for you…..😇😇