Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Gently Awakened by Sara Joseph

Do you dare risk unreservedly combining your Christian faith with your creativity? Could you be assured of thriving in the arts, or does that sound outrageously improbable?

Creativity is like an unwrapped gift from God. Its contents are mysterious, begging for action. The benevolent Giver eagerly awaits a response. Yet it is often tossed aside after merely removing the outer wrapping.

Too many Christians abandon their creativity, as if they were the hapless recipients of a toy with incomprehensible instructions. They walk away from their destiny— perhaps their very reason for being gifted in such a time as this. They remain oblivious of their God-authored potential, empowered by faith, to uniquely express the many nuances of their journey with Jesus.

Sara Joseph, an artist in paint, clay and verse, testifies to God’s infinite interest in every aspect of her creative enterprise. What she discovered may surprise you. In Gently Awakened, she employs prose, verse, and art to
attest to God's faithfulness to the artist. Far from empty theories, these lessons, forged in the paint-splattered laboratory of her own life, bring clarity to the practical considerations of living out the unique call of a creative Christian.
Such a story could be yours to live, in partnership with your Creator.

This book can be found and purchased on the following websites:

About the Author:
Sara Joseph, co-owner of Artists' Showplace Gallery in Dallas, Texas, is a painter and sculptor. Her artworks, created in multiple media, are in numerous corporate and private collections around the world. 

Born in India, her early art training exposed her to the artistic traditions and rigor of the East. She immigrated to the United States with her husband, Jacob, and raised two sons, Johann and Reuben. A resident of Fort Worth, Texas, she is the web author of Christian Artist Resource, an online resource for Christian artists internationally, as well as a changing gallery of contemporary Christian art. 

Sara has a BFA from Stella Maris College, Chennai, India. Her early training was in watercolor, in the restrained style of the East, where every stroke was in deliberate, transparent color. That restraint followed her for years, even though she was exposed to freer expression in watercolor at the Rhode Island School of Design. Transparent washes of luminous watercolor fascinated her for a long time, as she honed her ability to capture the world around her, without any thought to content, or meaning.

She is passionate about encouraging others to boldly trust God with their artistic aspirations, availing of every opportunity to speak to young, hesitant Christian artists, as well as to the skilled and experienced.

Learn more by visiting Sara's Website

I was so blessed to receive this book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion. 
I was not required to give a positive review.

"Maybe you sense that the moments that sing truest in your life are those spent expressing yourself in art. If you were to step up boldly to live it out, do you worry that you would starve?"

Sara's book encourages boldness in living out the creativity God has instilled in you. She, herself is blessed with talent not only in art, but also in writing and is using it as a means to express her faith. Her book is an encouragement to artists who are seeking to balance their desire to use, develop, and pursue their artistic talents as well as juggle life. 

Sara shares her story - Born in India, lover of art and painting, immigrant to America, wife, mother, business entrepreneur, child of God, yet, missing something. She shares how as she grew in her faith, she began listening to that still small voice encouraging her to pursue the creative talents God had given her. What were her fears? How did she begin to take those baby steps in faith? As she pursed God's will, she began to recognize that her creative talents came from her Creator, and were meant to be used and cultivated. She learned to trust His guidance and direction in her life. I was moved as I read. And you will be too! 

Sara gives insight into the purpose of our lives. " The answers are mysteriously intertwined with Jesus". She explains how God manifests himself to us- "If we complain we never hear God - perhaps its simply because we haven't taken time to restrain our roving attention and draw nigh." She talks about letting God manage our time and resources. She encourages keeping a journal and reminded ourselves of answered prayers.  Intriguingly, she uses the fig tree as a symbol and analogy of our Christian life. There is so much to learn through her words, and so much I was able to relate to. 

For me, as I read, I felt like I was getting to know her, sitting with her over a cup of coffee. I was encouraged to use my artistic abilities and trust God to provide through them instead of just using them as an on-the-side pastime. Her passion for God is evident throughout the book.  Although geared more to artists, I think this book could be read by anyone with an open mind to what God might have prepared for them. It is full of golden nuggets. And I will certainly be reading it again.  

1 comment:

  1. This sounds like such a great book--and a great way to learn more not only about God, but about who you are in God's eyes. Thank you for sharing this--looking into it.


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