Monday, 29 July 2019

Longing - Creating in Faith

Image of a mic in the distance a woman staring and the words Longing on the front.

Welcome to Creating in Faith.  I am now sharing these posts on my podcast with additional insights and you can listen to the podcast below.  There are also some great comments that were made on the original post which also adds some insight to the topic and may be able to bless you.

There are many things if we think about them carefully that we long for.  Some are to make us feel better within ourselves, some for the benefit of other people.  I have come to know and experienced the longing that stirs deep within and that feels like it cannot be remedied - found hand in hand with loss.
 Image of family man and woman running with man carrying what looks like a lifeless figure - Artist not known.
In my younger days I had many desires, I would have been convinced that some of which I could not live without, and thinking about them now see them as trivial and unimportant. My maturity makes sense of the world and understands how views, and desires change, and in my youth often with the wind.

My thoughts on longing are around the loss of a loved ones - a child, father, best friend and more recently brother.  You wonder how much your heart can take, never for one minute thinking that you will have to bear the callouses of yet another loss.  My longing is wrapped up in wanting to see them again, to say those words that never got said, to feel their presence one more time, to stop for a moment the ache, that dull ache which rests deep within.  There are momentary distractions and life feels like normal, you can breath again and sometimes laugh.  Then you remember, something missing, something you took for granted that it would always be there but you realise a hole remains.  Is it a round peg or a square, whatever shape it is it feels as if there is nothing that can fill it. 

Image of rusty pole in the sand and foot print
Time they say is a healer it gets better.  I can say that I still wonder what my son Cairo who would be turning 24 this year would be accomplishing and what adventures he would have got up to.  My dad would have been in his 80's there was still so much wisdom untapped and how he would have had so much fun with his grandchildren.  Barbara spurred me on in my journey as an artist we shared much laughter and supported each other, and now my Brother Robert.  I think of him constantly wondering how I can use my creativity to take away the ache, knowing that he would expect me to do all the things I shared with him from my hopes and dreams.  

Image of art work by Anthony Gormly of statute on a rooftop

The longing doesn't go away I guess my you find different ways to respond, and my creativity allows me to say those things I still want to say, and when I don't know what or how I should feel I just stay still and listen.

My faith helps me to put one foot in front of the other taking one day, one thought, one step at a time.  My creativity is helping me to say those things that I need to say whether it is a painting, piece of writing, poetry or something that I have created.  They go hand in hand bridging the gap between the words unsaid, mutterings and groans from the heart, laughter and tears on the opposite sides of the same coin and the understanding that has come over time.

Purple Thistle and flower image
There will always be a longing, we can't hide or pretend.  Some days it will be easier, and others not so easy.  We learn to embrace, to share the memories, to talk about our loved ones as if they are in the next room.  We remember them the good and bad times, the tests and the triumphs and we keep taking those steps reminded of the fragility and remembering to laugh....

Do some work in your art journal and see what areas you want to focus on and express either through colour, words, song, photographs and more.

Stay blessed and be a blessing.


  1. Hi Amanda - you think so deeply and give us views of life to remember and which in some ways relate to our own .. tragedy strikes and we know not when or understand why so often ...

    It's just we live on as we try and make sense - I know re my mother ... that during her illness she gave me a period of time to regroup and focus on the future, while being patient with her challenges and those I encountered along the way ...

    It's interesting - to work through things and understand why and how things are happening in life ... with many thoughts - you express yourself so well ... the swell will be enormous at times, and calm at others ... have peace along the journey of life ... Hilary

    1. Hi Hilary it has really been a challenge trying to make sense of things, I am so glad that I have a creative outlet that I can call on when my words are not enough. Thank you for your continued support:)

  2. Creativity plus faith: what a powerful combination in the face of life's hard losses.

    1. Juliet, it really has been a source of comfort, and expressing my faith through my creativity is the icing on the cake!

  3. Amanda, I just discovered your blog and this is the second post I read. I am very much looking forward to delving into it more. Please let me say that I am sorry for your losses. It takes a lot of courage to keep going on sometimes, and to stay open enough to stay creative. I happened to see a documentary today on an American Indian poet, John Trudell. In the 70s, he lost his wife, mother-in-law, and 3 babies in a fire. It took him a long time to function again, but he said that, in a way he did not understand at the time, the losses reconnected him to the earth and the cycles of life, and even to his own creativity, which he saw as a response to loss as well as an affirmation of what life called him to do. He never got over the losses; as you say, we have to acknowledge the hurt. But he tried to stay true to his creative and activist calling. Sending wishes for peace.


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