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day 6: how much more?

"day 6"
paper and found object collage on cardboard panel
gregory a. milinovich


the following post contains blatantly elementary theology and unabashed love of parent to child. either proceed with caution or stop reading this post immediately. -editor

so, its day 6 in my trash series. i am thankful for some interesting debate so far, even though many of my readers feel that these types of discussions are a bit too 'deep' for them to contribute to meaningfully. baloney! (bologna?!) you all have valuable input that i want to hear! you can use small words if you need to; that would actually work out better for me. but, by all means, please contribute to the conversation. i am hosting this conversation on the internet in front of all of you for that very reason. i NEED you to contribute and offer your voice. its like you are all sitting around the dinner table, but only a few of you are talking. that's pretty awkward if you think about it.

but to those of you who have been talking: thank you. its been an interesting conversation. today i just want to offer a very elementary and simple kind of theology of creativity.

when i became a father, i began to be able to relate to God as a father in a new and horizon-expanding way. there are countless examples of this, but the one i want to share with you today relates specifically to our conversation over the last several days. sometimes, to get him to stop whining or to stop playing with the power button on the computer, shannon and i will give jackson a peice of paper and a crayon. shannon did just that the other day only she gave him a pen instead of a crayon. later that day i found this on the floor:

now, i know that this is nothing you will soon see on the wall of an art museum, but, to me, his father, OMYGOSH i love it. it is like the mona lisa appeared on our office floor. how did this happen? how did such a precious creation find itself right here in our home? i immediately scooped it up and examined it/loved it/cherished it.
now, to borrow a style of logic from the apostle paul: if i, as a human father, can love the creations of my son this much, how much more does God love the things that God's children create? i mean, its a simple question, really. if we really believe that God loves us as a parent; if we dare to put the full weight of our trust on that, then we must also believe that God is taken by our work. we must conclude that God examines it/loves it/cherishes it on the most basic level, regardless of its timeless beauty or ability to speak to humankind across the ages. the theology this leads me to, then, is that what we make in our innocence and from our creative center is 'good' just as what God created when God made us creative was 'good.'
simple theology? yes. overly simple? i'm not so sure. i think it would do us some good to really think of ourselves as the children of God. we need metaphors for God's love. and if we, as eartly parents, can love our children for the scratches they carve out, how much more does God love me when i glue a lollipop wrapper, a light bulb box and a pringles lid to a peice of cardboard, trying to make sense of a world of trash?


Emoly said…
Okay, so seeing how Jackson has created "something" out of nothing made me think of this: he is going to continue to grow and "hone" his skills. His scribbling will give way to coloring pictures, which may lead to drawing and painting, or glueing and collaging. Greg, you were once at his level. You began in the same way. We all did. And we have all grown in God's eyes.

Whether you see your art as simple as Jackson's or as beautiful as Michelangelo's, your art is beautiful to God. The meaning of your art is often from God's love. In a simple way, so is Jack's. It's God's love that lets us create.

I'm not trying to be deep and philosophical here, I just see the son as his father, and the father loves his son.
greg. said…
that's exactly what i was trying to say, o krispy kreme-y one.

Emoly said…
Hey Greg,

I've been thinking about all this artsy stuff. It seems to me that everyone who has commented on your collages agrees that you are an "artist". Even the definition from wikopedia says, 'An artist also may be defined unofficially, as, "a person who expresses themselves through a medium".' So I've been thinking that until you accept this title for yourself, you're only going to keep asking questions. We can keep answering, commenting and debating on both questions and collages but it's up to you to accept your creativeness and see yourself as we see you. A true artist!

the krispy kreme-y
greg. said…
yeah, i get it. i'm an artist. i guess the questons are a great deal deeper for me, though. what does it mean for me to be an artist? what does it mean for me to be an artist in the context of a community? what does it mean for me to be an artist as a person of faith? as a pastor? as a husband/father? what does it mean for me to be an artist in terms of sharing what i create with others?

believe me, emily, the questions, are NEVER over. when i stop questioning i will stop really living. i am convinced of that...

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