Category Archives: Resources

Are you brave?

DSC_0298

It takes courage to create, to engage the creative genius. One must overcome the demons of perfectionism, procrastination, and often, years of obscurity. The critics, the naysayers, the haters, they arrive in time to dampen desire.

Every work of towering imagination is a culmination of years of toil. Even when one appears to be living out an ordinary existence, work is being done to create a masterpiece. It may seem sudden, but success is not a momentary accomplishment. A lifetime of choices, effort, mistakes, and failures comes together in a triumph that may outlive its maker.

Are you brave?

Do you have what it takes to get up when the silence is deafening and try again? Can you make the sketch, layer the oils, when your heart is broken? Will you write when all the world has failed to appreciate your words? Can you pull the camera out of the bag and take the shot when all you have are neglected prints? Can you put new ingredients together once more after so often getting an unpalatable taste? Will you sing your song when you are afraid no one will applaud? Could you play your instrument when every other time you missed a crucial note?

Will you keep trying when your hope has fled, and you feel you are failing all alone?

You must! You must have the hope, will, desire, courage to keep making an effort when the effort is all you have; when defeat is sour on your tongue, and the fading light is dying. Only then, only when you have seen the death of all you believe you might do and you keep creating, just when you defeat the rejection, conquer the fear, and do it because you must, because creating is your life, only then will it happen. You will know yourself tenacious enough to capture the prize and build your dream.

Believe, love, be a blessing in the world because this broken world needs the blessing! Celebrate your gifts, your talents, your abilities, and accomplishments, even if you must celebrate alone. You are a magnificent human being capable of greatness. Should you be ignored, do not worry, your time will come. The creativity that resides within you will find a way of expression in the world that gives you meaning and aids others in their journeys.

Never, don’t you ever, give up!

© Jo Ann Joyce Anita Jordan

My Diamond Idea

DSC_0087

Most natural diamonds are formed at high temperature and pressure at depths of 140 to 190 kilometers (87 to 118 mi) in the Earth’s mantle. Carbon-containing minerals provide the carbon source, and the growth occurs over periods from 1 billion to 3.3 billion years (25% to 75% of the age of the Earth). – Definition collected from Wikipedia by Google Search.

So, basically, it takes impossibility and forever to make a diamond. We, humans, are the same, we are products of deep time, and intricate chemical and genetic process. None of us can be recognized to reach perfection. Of course, my definition of human genesis includes God, and the fulfillment of Jesus Christ, but there is a purpose in my approaching this post in this way.

I am going to delve a bit into my personal situation here, but there is some reason for that, as well. The ideas I present have long taken up a portion of my mental real estate. Over the years an outline has formed in my mind, but I was obliged to care for my Mom, who suffered Parkinson’s Disease, dementia, and a host of other illnesses for twenty years. Now the inkling there may finally be an opportunity haunts me.

There is a mental health crisis in our nation and substantially throughout the world. I am one of the ill, with a severe case of Schizo-Affective Disorder. As often happens among those of us with mental conditions, I recently confronted my care team with discontinuing medication, I was told in no uncertain terms, “You cannot function without your medication.” Not the answer I ardently desired, but the expected one. I have lived this disease since 1981, and I tend to think I may have been a part of it even earlier. I want a miracle, it is very highly unlikely that will occur.

In treatment, on medication, I am incredibly functional. The complex idea that presents is: What if I were, with the aid of professionals, able to help others become more stable and find purpose? Some of the skills I use can be taught. I have systems and arrangements that allow me to do things as needed. These are not anything healthcare practitioners taught me.

I have learned over time to remain occupied, busying my mind always. Some of my pastimes entail minimal investment in materials. Stress, depression, paranoia, delusions, all fade when the brain is kept busy. Reading, journaling, creative writing, poetry, and art can so involve the imagination that it leaves off some of its self-destructive and harmful patterns. These are forms of self-therapy that may be taught and can help stabilize a personality. The thing I can offer is an inroad to these methods from the perspective of one encompassed by the active disease. When you live with it, you approach problems differently than one who merely learned about the conditions.

There are underserved populations for whom an open clinic could assist. Diagnosis, treatment, medications, instructions, and coping skills wrapped in creativity could be of life-changing help. Alas, I have no funds to attempt this, but I am convinced there is work to be done with which I could be of assistance, though I have no degree. I would also be pleased to have a viable income stream again.

© Jo Ann J. A. Jordan

No rejects here

DSC_0181

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. – Psalm 139:14

We may not be what others call beautiful or handsome. We may not have an immense intellect or shining talent. We may not excel in physical endeavors. Yet, each of us is a miracle created intentionally and given purpose by God. He knows us by name and treasures us as most beloved children.

There is meaning to each of our lives because even our flaws were fashioned by the Lord. Some of those teach us strength, and some educate others in tenderness.

Whoever we become, it is because God endowed us with the creative resources, gifts, talents, abilities, and ambition to reach a measure of success. We are not randomly placed on Earth. The Good Shepard leads us, guiding us from places of shadow into spaces filled with light.

When we feel we have lost our way or the world has turned coldly against us, we must call to mind the facts that we are cherished and loved by Him to whom all things belong. He set life in motion, how much more will He protect us from destruction and dissipation.

We strive for the best because the Best made us. Jesus enables us to be more than we imagine and fills us with dreams that convey us to heights of greatness, which without Him we would never achieve.

 

Sit down here near me
The table we will fill with
Creative delights
Then we will see this world more
Clearly, imagining joy
Divinely given without
Applying any restraints.

Sometimes, I am disappointed with myself when I craft something I believe to be essential and no one attributes any worth to it, like the entry I posted yesterday. However, it is not mine to decide what someone else enjoys or finds edifying. I must only do the work. I am given what I am, and that is enough because I am not junk. I am a person of meaning, not of myself, but because God says so.

I am grateful:

  1.   God created me in His image, breathing life and creativity into me, such that I may please Him.
  2.   I am going to get my replacement contact today.
  3.   I am up early.
  4.   Continual reading educates me.
  5.   I have resources for becoming a better writer with processes that improve my ability to convey meaning.
  6.   No matter what my status in the world, God loves me.
  7.   There is nowhere I can go, nothing I can do, which will separate me from the Lord.

As a prompt, create something that gives insight into your view of your meaning.

Thank you for visiting Haphazard Creative. I hope you will follow or find your way back. God Bless and Keep You!

© Jo Ann J. A. Jordan

It is our decision

IMG_20180221_143555-1.jpg

You must choose creativity if you wish to gain or expand creative ability. The choice will help you accept that you are, or become more of, a creative person.

If you write, I suggest lots of reading. Be selective though; books and magazines about the writer’s craft, creativity, inspirational books, devotionals, and pictorial books. Magazines, newspapers, candy reading (whatever you most enjoy), biographies (these give you insight into real people whose characteristics you can weave into realistic characters). Psychology, design, histories, poetry, and I am sure you are getting some ideas of your own.

For photographers, there is no substitute for getting out and shooting, even pictures from home can hone skills. National Geographic, Wired, Vogue, Architectural Digest, and other photo-laden magazines can have you imagining things to try. Photography magazines can instruct and inform. A photography club can provide critique and instruction.

Classes may be beneficial if you find an excellent instructor and can afford to invest those funds. Writers and photographers are well-advised to combine the talents. Should your skills be weaker in one, endeavor to improve. Text and pictures together draw more sustained attention than the presentation of either alone. Practice will enhance the work quickly if you focus on creative intensity, but be willing to invest years in becoming a master.

Art! Art is where my focus has broken down, but instruction books, classes, visiting places that contain art (even just the local craft store where there are prints), practice and more practice will help you grow your innate creative talent. Be courageous, you do not have to be Frida, Pablo, Leonardo, or Georgia, at this time, be yourself. Experiment, use color, use media, be bold, develop your eyes, and your hands. Find your element.

You are you, and your creative genius is exactly what your audience is searching for, your reach will increase in proportion to the effort you dedicate. If you misplace a line assume it should be there and build it into your creation. The chances are no one will ever discover what you consider imperfection. The audience forgives what to it is unknown. Would that I heeded my advice, but some are more beholden to perfectionism than are others.

Music, I seldom articulate my background, but I was in chorus and choir from an early age. I lettered in chorus the three full years I attended high school. I also studied guitar a few years and spent many hours happily playing electric organ. The choral lessons taught diction and enunciation. I left music when I lost my Kimball organ, I had it from the seventies until 2000. The wound is deep.

I will tell you if you have the gift of voice, or if you do not, it is a choice. The vocal instrument can be improved with time. You must want the facility, or it will elude you. Should you perform, do not stumble over a mistake, sing out, smile and keep going. The audience will not realize you fumbled unless your stress draws attention to it.

I have gone long. Sometimes, I find a groove.

I realized I have 1,330 followers on the blog, Chronicles. I thought those would follow me to the new venue, but it seems not. So, I am debating what I should do. There should be a way via WordPress to incorporate the two. Combining things and setting new priorities is sometimes a weakness of mine. Creative solutions are my mark so I will come up with something.

I am grateful:

  1.   I have a best friend.
  2.   I can play my stereo loud.
  3.   I have food to eat.
  4.   There is hot water.
  5.   I am comfortable writing.
  6.   I have books to read.
  7.   Pen and ink.

You have by now seen enough of my Gratitude Lists that you should be practicing them yourself. If not, ask yourself why you refuse. It is a beneficial habit.

Creativity
The match lighting the fire of
Our talent’s intent.

 

Fill your mind with all
The inspiration it will
Hold, then make it new.

 

Travel the spaces
Between the living moments
Cradle your ideas.

 

As a prompt, consider your creative talents and make a plan to foster your skills and increase them. You may need to dedicate more time or clear space. Prepare yourself for success, and you will indubitably find it.

Thank you for visiting Haphazard Creative. I hope you found something instructional, inspiring, or encouraging. If you like, please click the follow button, or come back when you are able. God Bless and Keep You, Everyday, Everyway, Always and Forever.

© Jo Ann J. A. Jordan

Comment on Red Flag Laws

DSC_0179

I just read an excellent article in The Washington Post about red flag laws that allow confiscation of guns from those who have exhibited a tendency to violence sufficient that someone close to them petitions the court for an order. This to me seems a good idea. It has likely prevented many deaths by suicide and some homicides and mass killings. I think most of us would agree that those with active suicidal ideation, those who have harmed someone in acts of domestic violence or through excessive bullying, and those who make violent threats which are credible should no longer possess weapons. The guns could be returned after a court deemed the danger past.

Understand, I am not in support of drastic measures regarding gun control. I believe in second amendment rights. I grew up with guns, I am a competent marksman, I enjoy shooting, I would never support gun confiscation across the board. Incidentally, I do not have any firearms, but no one took them. I do, however, believe there are situations where people pose a danger to themselves and others. In these instances removing firearms from ready availability can and does save lives.

Until our country finds a better way to help those who are mentally ill or exhibit signs of distorted mental states, this might be a good measure for adoption. Even in cases where psychological instability is not in evidence, but violence is indicated this could be beneficial. It would work as a kind of cooling down period. Anger, hurt, depression, fear are all terrible emotional disturbances which can cause people to act irrationally and commit regrettable acts. Control can be lost. An out of control human with a gun is a dangerous and lethal predator.

My gun patriots, I stand with you, keep your guns, I feel safer knowing you have them. My gun control friends, this is a measure that might find traction and provide some modicum of safety. I think it worth writing you all about. People under duress and under the influence of urges toward self-harm or murder should not have guns. That is a fact. We all want the violence to end. Can we work together?

The difficulty I see is this requires a tremendous amount of accountability and honesty on the part of those making the recommendations. I should hope our legal system would be able to use means to discern when there was a need and when not.

By the way that is from my heart. The WP did not cover it like that and Facebook will not post the article with its new fake media crap. I do not usually tag a large number of friends, but I would like a mix to see this and am quite sure the feeds have limits now.

© Jo Ann J. A. Jordan

We live in interesting times

#1 2018-01-14 Ava Baptism Cropped

My times are in your hands. – Psalm 31:15

We live in difficult times. All around us the world seems to have gone insane. This is the time for us, as the people of God, to step out of our complacency and the shadows concealing our faith. We must let the light of Jesus Christ shine through us. We are challenged by our Lord to speak and work against injustice and hate. Our mission is to reach out bringing change, not with anger and strife, but with generosity, consideration, kindness, meekness, and agape love.

Ours is not to fight and cause a scene, ours is to bring stability and peace to situations and moments where our actions and words must be Christlike to be effective.

We are ambassadors of Jesus empowered by the Holy Spirit to bring renewal to a lost and dying world through the Gospel’s revelation of the Lord. We are to be the living Gospel through words and deeds that cause the lost to turn from error and find the love of God. To foster a resurrection of the people who are in need, we must be wise through the study of the Word and attune our hearts to tenderness and love with the help of the Father. This is a time in which we can make an impact through Christ’s love.

Monday, January 15, 2018

 

Prayer of Acknowledgement

Dear Lord, remind us
Even in our trials, troubles,
We live in a dream,
Compared to others whose loss
We can scarcely comprehend;
A child taken too early,
A home completely destroyed,
An accident with high cost,
Let our hearts fill with such love
That we find strength to comfort
A world in need of Your touch
Let us be Your hands to soothe
And give us Your words of life
That all may know You, Jesus.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

 

Clinging to The ONE

Sometimes, and then again,
There is Jesus. He is
My HOPE when all is working 
Against me. When my despair
Is deep, He is my LIGHT.
When I am bright atomic anger,
He is there, a refreshing STREAM.
Jesus is the MUSIC leading
My heart to sing new songs.
When I am rejected, resented,
Shunned, He is my dearest FRIEND.
When the world falls apart
Jesus is the FORCE holding
My life, body, soul, spirit, together.
There is no other who can bring
COMFORT when I am at wit’s end.
He is the GOOD SHEPARD,
Almighty God, He anoints me.
Though I am shattered,
I will praise Him still.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

 

I hope your week has gone well. I encourage you to nurture your creativity and use it to share love with a world so badly in need of encouragement, assistance, understanding, and belief. You are a channel of goodness flowing into needy places if you so choose, and you should make that choice because love is what we are all here to share. The interesting in our times should not consist of the difficulties, crimes, anger, abuse, torment, instead, the love, discoveries, creations, remedies, constructions, technologies, and benefits of such a prosperous age should be the interest.

The creativity that each person possesses should be put to use in improving life for themselves and all others. This gift of God can be harnessed for positive change. No matter your medium, cooking, knitting, beading, music, photography, lettering, art, poetry, fiction, non-fiction, memoir, prose, clothing design, home decorating, jewelry making, oh, man, this could go all night, you are responsible for using your gifts, talents, and abilities for humanity’s good. Be about it, I say.

I am grateful:

  1.   Every day is not as awful as this one was.
  2.   I have food, clothes, shoes, books, dogs, computers, and I know how to use them.
  3.   Possibilities are plentiful.
  4.   I have a few people who will talk me down when I am ready to break.
  5.   I love my new church.
  6.   I was given the opportunity to take photos at church Sunday.
  7.   I still have my dog, Hope.

 

Thank you for visiting Haphazard Creative. There is a follow button if you wish to use it, if not come back soon. I hope your week lightens your heart and nourishes your creative mind. Please be careful out there. The world can be treacherous.

© Jo Ann J. A. Jordan

Goals Anyone?

DSC_0186

On the first day of a new year, many people make resolutions. Some creatives are not great at adhering to something strict. The recommendation to make an effort, maybe not daily, but regularly, to express creativity seems doable. There is a multitude of tools to help motivate us and increase our skills. Some of these are like Creative Bug offered as a subscription on Amazon, or the numerous books that cover almost anything creative one wishes to do. Magazines, YouTube, blogs like this one, Udemy courses, Coursera, all afford opportunities to become more adept. The most effective method of increasing abilities is frequent practice. The more skill is used, the more it evolves into expertise.

A 365 project can be beneficial. Taking a photo, making a journal entry, completing a gratitude list, doing a doodle or drawing, working on a painting, writing a poem, flash fiction, working on a story or novel, or anything every day can increase proficiency prodigiously. A year and a half of one such project can be found on Chronicles. There is a trove of information there.

This is an open invitation to make the use of your creative talent an intrinsic part of your life. Please share your journey here if you like.

 

Today, I am grateful:

  1.  I have a warm shelter to protect me from the frigid cold.
  2.  There is plenty of food to nourish the puppy dogs and me.
  3.  I have the tools I need to be productive.
  4.  My grief over losing Mom is beginning to lessen.
  5.  I have clothes I like.
  6.  My son is doing well in his position at the GigaFactory.
  7.  There is reason to believe 2018 will be much better than 2017.

 

Life does not force us
To become who we should be;
Creativity
Causes us to grow, evolve,
Fulfilling all our promise.

 

As a prompt: Set a goal, easily met, write it out and hang it in the workspace, so it is visible daily.

Thank you so much for visiting Haphazard Creative. I hope you found something that inspired or encouraged you. There is a follow button if you wish to click it, or please return often. Happy New Year and may you grow your creativity in coming days.

© Jo Ann J. A. Jordan

« Older Entries