This is a personal prayer painting I’m working on this week. It’s not finished.

And I have to confess, while it makes perfect sense from one angle of meaning I can see,
it makes no sense at all to me on many other levels.

So I remind myself that while it can have many meanings that can help inform me,
it also doesn’t mean a thing at all.
It’s just a painting.

The process has been filled with all sorts of discomforts and dissatisfactions.
Dis-Eases, really.
You know, out of connection with well-being and flow
and the soothing quality we sometimes find in acts of prayer and contemplation.

So, in those moments between the soft release of my own will (what I like to think of as prayer),
those moments when I feel all tense and worried
and no more enlightened or comforted than when I started,
I remind myself, also, that it’s about the process.

So I just give in and get a little crazy and smear some color around,
I let go of caring so much about how things will turn out later, in the future,
I drop a little of that self-harness behavior of fixation,
and I put all my energy into working out those knots of desire,
until it starts to feel relieving again…

and, quite literally, I feel it there in my body. 
Release. Relax. Shift.
She is so wise, this body compass.

So, when I sit down to paint or pray or write or yoga-fy,
it’s not so much about maintaining steadfast continuity
or an impermeability to the rest of the world and my mind.

It’s more about accepting that there is no such thing
in a living life force that is always open to miraculous change
because like all good (and bad) feelings, it is passing and transforming.

It shifts moment to moment, like a hummingbird from one flower to the next.
It is not about the beauty of the flower,
but the sweet nectar within.

SO, even though I begin with a “prayer”, I am human,
and I wax and wane in and out of that deliberate intention of listening.
I dilly-dally with my own stuff within,
trying to make peace treaties with my own battles and disagreements
of attachments and patterns, fixations and obsessions.

But the grace,
the nectar, is in this:

while my mind and focus may shift faster than my wings can carry me,
while my worries may escalate and dissipate depending on the moment in the process,
while my critical eye may have an opinion to share,
while I may hear no certain answer in my practice,
while I may have to muster up the  momentum
to keep choosing colors and applying the brush or sponge on some days,

when I do so,
when I show up to my creative interaction with Source,

there are moments inbetween all the stuff of discord
that are the purest bliss and relief I have ever known,
~ except perhaps in the awestruck goodness of mother nature’s magic milk ~

and always,
holding steadfast and strong despite me and my sometimes fickle frame,

there is the courage of the prayer
given a life of its own to create answers
that will show up in their own perfect timing.

My one word to represent this prayer and start the painting.