Ok. So maybe this isn’t a post of my favorite previous artists of the month so much as as recap.
I just thought y’all needed to remember some of the wonderful people we’ve welcomed here at the Long Live Beauty cottage over the past 8-10 months! Remember when I first announced we’d be starting this monthly feature?
- Erin Elisabeth Aubrey. Remember her? Sweet-singin’, guitar-strummin’ Tennessee girl? She shared with us her story of creating and making music, both as a music therapist and as a human, how creating is integral to living life whether society deems it “worth something” or not. (By the way, Erin creates beautiful music herself, which you can find here and here.)
- Bailey Roberts. Her photography. Wow! And her heart for beauty found in the story, one reason why she loves wedding photography. Her story of God working through her in spite of obstacles like OCD and social anxiety is so encouraging! And her skill is excellent.
- Heather Knudtsen. Her brilliance. Her heart. Her articulate words that light the dark places that art tries to go so often. Those are rough waters to navigate for Christ-following creatives. My favorite quote (well, one of them), from her post is, “We must live in the tension of the world we hope for and the world that is.”
- Andrew Peterson. Yeah, there was that one time I took it upon myself to write a post about an artist whose work I love and admire. (Admittedly, I never asked Mr. Peterson if he’d like to write the post himself… maybe I should do that sometime?)
- Aimee Brown. “The Art of Motherhood” remains one of my favorite posts ever of all time. This woman knows the art of loving people into thriving children of God (not just her own kids). I love her spirit of dwelling in palpable gratitude for right now, for treasuring every moment with her children in their current season.
- Brooke Reed. When she writes, my soul cries, “Amen!” Especially when she shared about the struggle to bottle beauty and take ownership forever out of a fear of losing it, which of course means you miss out on just savoring and enjoying it at all. “Beauty begs enjoyment, not ownership,” she succinctly illumines for us. And she connects this to stories, and their power to “crack open the universe.” (AH. So good, right?!)
- Humiltea Design by Kara Cline. A multi-talented as a gifted photographer, potter, writer, painter, hand-letterer, and musician with a marked spiritual gift of hospitality, with bold humility, she reminds us that the voice telling us we’re alone, that we’re deficient as creatives and artists, that we have nothing of value to give compared to others- that voice is a liar. It’s so good to remember that we make the Holy Spirit heartsick, as she says, when we reject our gifts and view them as “filthy rags.” Re-reading her post recently reminded me that my gifts are from God, and their value comes from him.
If you missed any of these posts, I encourage you to go back and read them! This is one of my greatest purposes in continuing this blog: cultivating community among believers who are creatives. I don’t just do these posts for fun. I include them because they are crucial for all of us.
Be encouraged and empowered by their stories; invest in whatever gifts God has given you. Any gift! Whether you are a business-person, an IT guy, a mom, a painter, a cashier at a grocery store, a preacher, a mentor, a friend, a butcher, baker, or candle-stick maker. You have capacity to bring the kingdom of God into right now, where you are.
That is the greatest beauty of all.