I am. Often we identify ourselves by statements. I am a wife. I am a daughter. I am a pastor. I am a designer, a prophet, an apostle, a student, a friend. Most of our I am statements are true. Not all, but most.
Without community it is impossible to see ourselves objectively. We bend truth to create an image of what we think others like. Or we escape into the shadows, choosing isolation, making excuses of why hiddenness is noble. Community is hard.
I am a designer. I have a trained eye. Curated Arts Festivals are my preference over crafts shows. My trained eye sees beauty in the simple and the complex. It sees the craftsmanship, the delicate intricacies found in layers of texture, the skilled use of color upon color, the multiple planes, and viewpoints. My eye sees the challenges that pique my curiosity and makes me linger to gather the fullness of story. My eye requires me to engage and not hurry to the next thing.
A trained eye takes time. It takes submission to one who has trained then learned to train others. It requires community and critique. Many call themselves a Creative, but to be a masterful craftsman goes deeper and is only achieved by submission, dedication, and perseverance. Above all to create beautiful things, one must have developed an eye to see, then the hand surrenders to the process. It is the one thing. The first thing.
People are fascinating creations, full of emotions, thoughts, dreams, and infinite possibilities. We are a body, with a mind, spirit and soul. Our Creator God has formed us uniquely. Yet within each of us are longings. We long for connection. We want to be known and to know. We want to belong. We gather. Pockets of likeness are formed.
We want significance.
It is our one thing, to love and be loved. To know love, one must be loved.
As complicated as it all can seem, it is really simple. It is friendship. To be a friend requires of us more than just a heart connection, or a common passion or skill, or a nationality. To say, I am a friend, requires responsibility and choice.
To say I am a friend of God, is a statement that requires of us truth. I may know of God. I may read His Word, and sing the songs, read the books, listen to podcasts from my favorite men and women who walk with Him. I may find encouragement and wisdom in their teaching. To boast that I KNOW Him, is so much greater. I have trained my eyes to see His ways in the ordinary and the extraordinary, I have trained my ears to hear Him speak and I stop to linger and listen. I want to know His ways. I choose to obey. I have been through hard times and weathered the tests. I have seen Him make the impossible possible. I have yielded my rights to His will. And I have learned the greatest I am. I have built a friendship with I AM.
Like Paul, David, Jeremiah, Moses, and John, knowing God, as a friend is the one thing worth the cost. To call myself a designer and not know the Principals of Design is not truth. To call myself a friend of God is to accept His principals, His ways, His love, His desires.
Our one thing becomes Him. He is love, to know Him is to know love.