Art is truly a process, “one that has been used for millennia to get under and express human searching and struggling in all things spiritual.”
Art as spiritual practice for people who don't consider themselves "artists", rather art enthusiasts, seems to be growing. Even adult colouring books are becoming in the in thing! Art as a spiritual experience is well worth thinking about in Lent. Using repetition in drawing, painting, and/or other forms of art practice can be very prayerful, restorative, meditative, allowing for peace of mind and openness to God’s still, small voice of love and calm and call. Doodling, done while focusing on a specific thought, idea, text or done without worry too much about creating a “work of art” was a true blessing for me.
So, here’s a Lenten invitation to doodle as spiritual practice. There are 40 boxes. There is one box for each day in Lent (not including Sundays as they are “little Easters”). Each day you have the opportunity to prayerfully approach one box/shape.
By way of example, I once kept a Lenten doodle calendar for people! I would write the person’s name in one of the forty shapes and pray for that person. Then, I would draw, colour, and doodle as I held that person up to God. Sometimes, I’d write the name at breakfast and add colour as suppertime devotion. Another calendar was used for praying a word each day. I would pray a word from a morning scripture passage or a word that spoke to a particular spiritual need (compassion, truth, mercy, love). On certain days, the word I printed was a shortcoming along the pathway to Easter. It was deeply healing to draw, doodle, and colour as I prayed for strength and guidance. As well, there were words that simply intrigued me and enlivened my experience of God’s presence.
So, will you join me in this practice? Perhaps you can think of people for whom this would be a good thing for the Lenten way. Please share your insights and the growing edges.
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