social spark Aisling Beatha: Summer Art Journal Book Study Part 6

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Friday, August 08, 2014

Summer Art Journal Book Study Part 6

Still going?  Yep, I'm still reading this book, still making art journal pages to cover what I read.  I swear this is the most consistent I have been with a project in a very long time.  If I miss a day or two I don't say "Failure, just give up, you'll never finish it", Nope, because this book is so enthralling and I am gaining so much from it, I just pick myself up, get back into the studio and carry on!

So far I have shared with you
Summer Reading Art Journal

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Chapter 12 introduces the next word or "spiritual practice", HELP!
There are days when we wish there could be some other system.  We wish there could be way of developing patience without delay, courage without danger, forgiveness without offence, generosity without need, skill without discipline and strong love without hard to love people.
 It turns out there is no other way.  The creator has created the right kind of universe to produce these beautiful qualities in us creatures.  And among these beautiful qualities is INTERDEPENDENCE - the ability to reach out beyond ourselves, to ask for help from others and from God, and to offer help as we are able.
 He finishes the chapter with the concept of yourself as your friend.
Through the practice of petition, you learn to stand with God and see yourself as needy, weak, limited, imperfect, edgy, stressed, driven, frightened or troubled.  But you don't criticise, condemn or reject yourself.  Rather, you join God in God's desire for your own expansion and well being.  You join God in wanting the best for yourself and in that light you make your request for your friend, for yourself.

Summer Reading Art Journal

Chapter 13 continues with the concept of help and there was so much I wanted to record here, to remember, that I had to use 3 of the journaling spots as tip ins, securing one edge with washi tape.

Summer Reading Art Journal

At the beginning of chapter 13 the author discusses the sometimes controversial book, the Prayer of Jabez, which has been criticised by some as a selfish prayer for just getting more for self.
The author suggests that it is in fact prayer for liberation:
"Liberate me God from the way I have been labelled by my Mother."  It is a cry for the cycle of pain to be stopped.  "She named me pain in response to the pain I caused her, but that, in turn has caused me pain.  Let it STOP!"
So, in petition, like Jabez, we expand beyond selfishness to otherliness, beyond pain to blessing.  "Bless me, not just so I can be blessed, but more, so I can be a blessing to others.  Heal me not just so that I can be healed, but so that I can be a healer for others.  Provide for me not just so that I can be comfortable but so that I can provide for others and bring them comfort."
He goes on to explore 3 areas in which we frequently need to cry to God for help and how the word HELP , the practise of petition, can benefit us in each of those areas.

  • Anxieties - What MIGHT happen
  • Woundedness - What HAS happened
  • Disappointment - What HAS NOT happened 

Whether we're dealing with anxieties, wounds, disappointments or other needs and struggles, there is enormous power in SIMPLE WORDS - the words by which we name our pain and then translate it into a request to God.  HELP is the door into this vital practice.
Check back tomorrow for the pages on the next word, PLEASE, as we express requests to God, not for ourselves, but for others.

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