Questions? Session #1-"Where are you?"
Session #1 Where are you?
Supplies needed: black ink pens, 2 pieces of watercolor paper, any watercolors.
Welcome to The Maker’s Space.
There are many ways to hear God; through Scripture, through creation, music, community and the arts. This is a safe place where we slow down and use art to practice listening to God. This year, The Maker’s Space will be looking at 5 questions that God asks us that we can ask ourselves in order to get to know ourselves and God, and others, better. You might feel like you are languishing, [a state between despair and flourishing,] and I think that asking questions of God, ourselves and each other can help us think about the “what’s next?” and move us into flourishing again. Think about doing this yourself, and then invite a group of friends or family to do it together to encourage conversations. There will be more discussion questions at the end to take it further to promote conversation with each other.
Draw a playground with your pen and watercolors.
[This is a good ice breaking exercise, whether you are doing it on your own, or you are doing this with a group or a group of family members. This is a playful exercise that helps us get “out of our head” or overthinking everything, and helps us connect with our creative side.]
If you are doing this as a group, Introduce yourself to each other and your favorite part of your playground. Allow about 10 minutes for this exercise.
For inspiration of our art that we are going to be using today, we are going to look at the art of Kandinsky and his use of shapes and lines.
Watch this 10 minute video for a little background context of today’s featured artist.
Kandinsky Youtube video
Next, for context, we are going to look at drawing lines.
Neurography was coined by the neuroscientist Pavel Piskarev in 2014. Neurographica is a drawing technique that links the conscious with the subconscious. They are lines that start with problems, then focus on the intersections and rounding the intersections so that they begin to look like neurons. We are activating connections between brain cells and neurons which will help turn stress into calm. Here is an example.
We are going to use a form of this to help us link the conscious and the subconscious with the help of the Holy Spirit.
Inviting the Holy Spirit into the our art…by focusing on God, it becomes art worship not just another art project.
We can use our breathing to slow down our hearts, bodies and minds so that we can notice what God is saying to us. As we look at the question “Where are you?”, know that we have a guide and a Savior who can lead us out of anything or anywhere you find yourself.
Start by taking deep breaths and notice how your body feels today. Continue to breathe slowly and your heart and your mind will begin to slow down as well. The millions of thoughts that
Read the following or have someone read this to you. Close your eyes and imagine Jesus talking to you. Invite Him into your art, to do art with you, and speak to you though your art.
[This is from the Jesus Always Devotional on Oct. 14]
"I will be your Guide even to the end. Rejoice that the One who leads you through each day will never abandon you. I am the Constant you can always count on—the One who goes before you yet remains close beside you. I never let go of your hand. I guide with My Counsel and afterward I will take you into Glory.
Many people are overly dependent on human leaders because they want someone to make their decisions for them. Unscrupulous people can manipulate their followers to do things they wouldn't freely choose to do. But everyone who trusts Me as Savior has a Leader who is completely trustworthy and dependable.
I guide you with My truth and teach you My precepts so that you can make good decisions. I've provided you with a wonderfully reliable map:the Bible. My Word is a lamp to your feet and a light to you path. Follow this Light, and follow Me--for I am the One who knows the best way for you to go."
Psalm 48:14 says "For this God is our God for ever and ever; he will be our guide even to the end."
Read Genesis 3:9. Switch places with Adam, and let God ask you…Where are you?
"When they heard the sound of God strolling in the garden in the evening breeze, the Man and his Wife hid in the trees of the garden, hid from God. God called to the Man: “Where are you?”."
Sit for a moment in that, thinking about where you are at this very moment. How are you feeling. What’s going on in your life. Focus on something that is on your mind right now, perhaps a small problem or a big problem.
- Draw a line, scribble or doodle that reflects the problem-5-10 seconds.
- Start some wordless music to draw by. Suggestion: "Spinphony" quartet, a combination of pop and classical string instruments reflecting Kandinsky.
- Examine intersections, make connections, by rounding off corners
- Add transformational shapes of lines to fill in spaces
- Add any organic forms from nature, shapes or patterns, using a combination
- When you feel that the composition is finished with your line drawing, add colors to the different shapes, or shading in different places.
- End somewhere on your composition with gratitude. There is always something to be thankful for, even if your life looks like a mess. While we wait for others to finish, write on the back “where are you, right now?” [physically, emotionally, spiritually, mentally,] and any insights you received.
- Everyone has a story. If you want to continue writing, “where did you come from?”
- Take time to share your art. Look at it and describe what you see about your life, your initial problem, and any other insights that you discover. God does speak through our art and always has something to say if we really look and listen to the thoughts He is putting in our mind. But, we have to ask HIm. You also have to believe that He exists, in order to ask Him for insight. If you let it, your art will continue to speak to you in the coming days. Take the time to reflect and see with the eyes of your heart.
Everyone has a story. This is a great place to start when you want to get to know someone, or to put someone at ease and find some commonalities. It’s also a great way to check in with family and those that you know really well. We don’t often take the time to reply check where we are in the present moment. We are always too busy looking where we are going next or wallowing in where we’ve been.
Further discussion questions for yourself/friends or family:
1. Where do I find myself today? How are you, really? Is there something on your mind? Am I languishing, a place between despair and flourishing? Do I know someone who is? Am I flourishing? Why or why not?
2. Where have I come from? How did you get to this place in your life? Where do you find yourself now? How has your past shaped you?
3. Where am I going? What is your next step? Where are thinking of going next with this?
4. Consider Acts 17:26-27 “From one man He made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. God did this so that they would see him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us. For in him we live and move and have our being.”
Not only are we called to help our world, by being makers not just takers, but we are called to the particular time and place where we find ourselves.
What are your thoughts on the above verses and statement?
5. Do you think that everyone has a purpose? How does having a purpose shape the meaning of life?
[Excerpts taken from the book, A Practical Guide to Culture, Helping the Next Generation Navigate Today’s World by Kunkle and Stonestreet and The Quest by Beth Moore.
Write me and let us know how this session went and show me the art that you and God created together. firstname.lastname@example.org
So far, I have led 3 sessions of this workshop, one being with my family over the holidays. Even with my family, I was encouraged how the art helped them slow down and see something about themselves. Most people won't take the time to slow down and be in the moment, but will if you invite them and get a group together.
Art examples from three of these workshops: