Masterpiece Project 2009: Flow

I’m  the onlyone awake. 

The kids are sleeping on floors and beds around the house—my parents’ house—in rural Tennessee.  I hear Mom’s sporadic little coughs from their bedroom, and I imagine she’s holding a flashlight over a spy novel, waiting for sleep to come and sweep her off the page.  (That’s a great feeling, falling asleep without any “lying there trying.”  Have  I mentioned the time I bruised my eye falling asleep reading?  Paperbacks are safer.)

I’m listening in the dark to The Weepies, who are new to me but who have come highly recommended. 

Our annual week at Masterpiece Project has reached its end once again.  So many beautiful young artists learning together what it means to be about art and about faith and about community.   I snagged some pictures from fellow staffer, Claire’s collection on Facebook (thanks, Claire!), since my camera was broken.

Every year has its theme, this year the theme being Flow.  It turned out to be a rich and inspiring theme, as we explored what it means to be “in the flow” and also, what keeps us from being there (fear, woundedness, critical attitude, etc.).  We fleshed out the ideas of Thirst, Thirst Quenched, and Overflow…studying Acts 2 and John 7:38 of the New Testament. 

“He who believes in me, from him will flow rivers of living water.” 

The thing is that real life has everything to do with community (despite our efforts to make it only about the individual), and being “in the flow” means accepting our gifts and resources with open hands so that as we are filled up, the overflow spills out into other people’s lives.  The students at camp incorporated a painted image of this into their collaborative project:  water poured into an open palm, splashing  over and through fingers.  (The project was a jukebox musical which utilized numerous pieces of pop music, drama, visual art, choreography, and musical performance.)

Isn’t that gorgeous?

I sing for you.  You draw for me.  Someone serves.  Another teaches. 

Young artists are often riddled with fear.  Fear that what they have is not enough.  That they will be frowned upon.  Misunderstood.  Invisible.  They so need to hear (as we all do) that what they have been given is not owned by them.  That the most loving they can do for the world is share themselves.  To be humble but generous in the contribution of thought, idea, creativity.    Every piece of the puzzle matters in the completion of the whole picture--if any one piece holds back, the rest suffer for its absence.

This is community.  This is the flow.  This was Masterpiece Project 2009.  Students and staff immersed in art & faith for six beautiful days. 

Every one of us better for it.