My mom’s father was a minister of a small church located on the north side of Spencer and their family lived in the parsonage next door. Spencer, is the town where my parents grew up. They met in junior high and were friends through high school. When my dad died two and a half years ago, he was buried in the cemetery next to the church.
My friend Russ drives around for his job. And Spencer is one of the towns he drives through. Sometimes, he stops at the church to visit the place where my dad is buried. Recently, he stopped by and noticed that the little church was being torn down. The bricks were stripped from the exterior and soon the rest of it will be gone.
Russ walked around the church grounds and saw pieces of brick lying here and there. He found one that was in still in one piece and picked it up. Then he took it home, painted some little flowers on and my family’s last name on it and gave it to my mom as a keepsake.
Now if a person came to my mom’s house and saw the brick, they might think, “Oh that’s a nice little brick”, but what I really love about the brick is that to me it represents so much more.
That brick was a part of a structure that was a part of my parents’ past. My parents’ lives eventually brought them to know my friend Russ and to contribute to his life. And now, Russ has found that object and added his own voice by painting it. Then by giving it to my mom, has completed a circle.
Our lives are like that brick in a way. For a time, our life has one purpose and touches certain people. As time goes on, the role we once filled, may change. Our purposes change. And the people we touch go on to touch other people’s lives and once in a while we see the effect of our influence come back to us. We are all connected in some way.
I like to look at life like a web of connections. It may seem somewhat random, but I don’t think it is. We are all right where we are supposed to be. And the people in our lives are there for a reason.
In a way, that’s what making art is all about. We can take raw materials such as clay, or wood, or brick or canvas, infuse meaning to it, add our own voice and make something new.
As you go through the next week, take notice of the connections. How has your life been enriched by someone? Can you turn that into a piece of art? I find that making art helps me find meaning in the chaos. Hopefully it will for you too.
Art Saves Lives!