Tuesday, April 12, 2016

White Space

I've been experimenting with watercolor recently, attempting to paint flowers. I watched the way a purple dot in the middle of a wet, blue blob would spread into something like a flower. I noticed how one color would fade when I painted over it with another. In this way, I layered on paint.

Inevitably, I would end up with a busy intersection of color that would spin the eye in circles and leave it dazed.

It took me a while to realize I was burying one of my most powerful tools.

Finally, I left some areas inside the flowers untouched. The blanks added depth and allowed imagination to take over and fill in beauty my paintbrush never could.

That's when I learned sometimes a void is more powerful than an addition.

The key to reaching my goal wasn't layering in more. The key was leaving white space.


This is true in my life, as well. I often have this image of everything I want to accomplish, and I set to work making it happen. Instead of painted flowers, I layer one task and one passion and one obligation over another. I operate believing that with enough layering, I can fit it all in and will end up with the beautiful life I dream about.

Instead, I end up with a confusing, stressful jumble.

God must be concerned about this habit of mine, because He keeps bringing it up. He used nature this last weekend to force a little literal white space on me in the form of snow--not my favorite thing in April, but you can bet it got my attention. He also put a few people in my path who posted verses and blogs about resting in Him.

Is this an area Jesus might be calling you to examine, as well? 

Join me in adding a little white space to the canvas of your life. Take time to relax. Contemplate, read the Bible, and pray. Set aside the to-do list and check a few things off the want-to-do list. Spend time with loved ones.

Personally, I've decided to spend a chunk of my day today reading a book I want to read and not one I feel like I need to read.

How do you add white space to your day?

2 comments:

  1. Beautiful and timely thoughts. Recently I was feeling very guilty about some downtime I had for a few weeks where I didn't really write, slept in a lot, played Hearts on my phone, and generally decompressed from a busy summer/Christmas season. Well, it's been all go since the beginning of March, and now I'm thankful I had a rest. White space is invaluable! Thanks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad you got some rest in there! After a big project (finishing my last manuscript), I tend to pull way back for a while, too. Thanks for stopping by the blog :)

      Delete