Tending or Toiling
My super creative buddy Josh and I were slapping bar-b-que into 📷our faces the other day as we threw ideas about art back and forth (I write and draw, he writes, photographs, and makes music). We both have several irons in the fire, and have been trying to figure out which direction we should go, which projects we should invest in, and how we, as Christians, can do art well.
One of the questions that came up was, should we do our art on the Sabbath? Is art considered to be work?!
Sometimes art seems a lot more like work than it does play. But why? And one of us asked, could it have something to do with the epic ‘fall of man’? Happy Fella pleasantly tending a garden suddenly turns into exhausted Fella tortuously toiling in the fields. One looks a lot more like work than the other. And we thought that maybe by examining what Adam Dude was doing right, before he did wrong, we could figure out how we could pursue our calling better.
First, Fella was tending the garden he was given. He wasn’t building skyscrapers of babel or doing poker tournaments to make a buck. Fella was tasked to do the best with what he had been given, in his case, tend a garden, and he was killing it (I mean doing a good job, not actually killing it). He wasn’t trying to seek glory or fame or money, just doing his best with what he had been given.
I wonder if Fella got hungry. I am guessing so, but I bet he didn’t ever go hungry for long. It looks like he was totally trusting God would provide for him.
He also had a partner in gardening (crime came later) and it seems like they supported each other, helped each other and we’re generally pretty cool with each other.
And then it looks like they spent time every day just to take📷 a stroll with God around the garden and talk to Him, as naked as happy piglets.
And things seemed to be pretty peachy.
But it was when they chose to do things their own way, didn’t trust God, made a decision without asking help from the other, and ran away from God, that things went sour.
Fella’s fruit went bad.
So here is what I gather from our poor Fella and the Eden story that can maybe help us pursue our calling well.
1. Pursue a calling that he has asked you to do (or at least hasn’t said not to do). 2. Trust God to provide. 3. Surround yourself with like-minded community (Like my awesome buddy Josh. Thanks Josh!). 4. Make sure we spend time each day to walk with God. 5. And feel no shame about showing the world exactly who you are and how God made you.
Except, I think it’s okay if you wear clothes.
(you can check out my buddy Josh’s art here: joshuagarmon.com)