• The Sensory Button

    March 23, 2019

    Sleep happens to me as my head travels downward to the pillow. I’ve come to realize that I have a sensory button on the back of my head. As that button makes contact with the pillow, it turns off all of my voluntary thinking and actions. I’m asleep – this device is on a timer. When the device triggers around 4 am, my head levitates from the pillow – all unintentional.

    The intentional calls me to negotiate the steps downward toward the kitchen. Intentionally grabbing my necessities – coat, mud boats, phone and most importantly my flashlight. Opening the kitchen door I enter into the darkness. After a few steps, I turn off the flashlight looking up into the dark uncluttered sky I say “Thank you Jesus.” My morning greeting.

    Maybe it’s 100 yards to the studio. In that limited–sight journey, I’m overwhelmed. The beam of light from the flashlight is giving me all the information that is necessary.

    Studio door creaks and I begin a familiar routine – mud shoes off, studio shoes on, coffee to be made and praise music fills my space. Some mornings I know exactly what I want to paint – very intentional. Then there are mornings when what happens is completely unplanned – unintentional. Intentional and unintentional – that would make up all of life. The unintentional good stuff can be the best ever or the worst. Same is true with the intentional.

    Walking over in the dark is placing myself in the intentional. I have limited information on this narrow path with only a beam of light. I’m good with that. The limited sight offers freedom. I am not responsible for what’s out in the dark that I cannot see. This predicament forces me to have a trusting heart.

    On the journey home, the sun is up and my eyes are filled with sky, grass, trees, noticed chores to be done – a kaleidoscope – sensory overload.

    My art has always been about identifying the essential and eliminating the rest. On the walk over to the studio in the dark, all is eliminated except the beam lighting the path. One beam of light, one focus.

    In the light of day, I declutter my life – embracing the necessary, but releasing my grip on what’s not.

    Depending moment by moment on God’s spirit, I can make determinations on what needs to be kept and what needs to go.

    The 100 yard march is a plugging into recharge. Setting my mind on what is above. As I look up into the morning sky, it doesn’t look cluttered to me. Peace from above.

    This sensory button is one of my most cherished parts of this old body. Like the many other parts inside me that I don’t understand, this sensory feature is mysterious – totally involuntary.

    I pray God takes control of my intentional thoughts. He says his thoughts are not my thoughts. Lord please take control of my thinking. I intentionally give my thinking over to you. Place in me that Holy Spirit sensory button that changes my thinking to agree with yours.

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