Wednesday, June 26, 2019


Daily Gratitude Year 7-Day 176: Today, I am grateful for "duende". 

Sometimes, our native language fails us. All of these words, but not a one is just right. Then, another language nails it in a word. Duende is a Spanish word. (I'm giggling as I think it sounds like "Dwen Day"... Dwen Bontrager)

Duende (dwen-day): n. the mysterious power of art to deeply move a person. 

It is the heightened sense of passion that art inspires. It is what makes it matter in this generation and the generations to come. 

Human hands have limited time, skill and courage. When someone breaks through the monotony of daily living to invest the time to create something unique and beautiful, it evokes a sense of awe from the rest of us. 

Duende happens as we gaze on a photograph that tells a story. It happens when a seamstress designs and creates a wedding dress. It occurs when a song is finally written, a piece of glass is blown or a piece of pottery thrown. 

Art parties are really heart parties. The paintings may or may not be ready for the wall or a gallery, but each one would have a special place on God's refrigerator. We are all children of the Father, created in His image and created to create. 

And yet, O Lord, you are our Father. We are the clay, and you are the potter. We all are formed by your hand. -Isaiah 64:8

"Creativity takes courage." -Pablo Picasso.  My SIL, Jennifer,  gave me this quote for my creative space. It sits over the desk where I write, edit photos and scrapbook. Yes, words paint pictures, too. 

I love to ponder the difference between crafting and art. Some crafts qualify as art. Some art was crafted for utilitarian purposes, but the workmanship of the creator turned it into art. Think of antique chairs, jewelry, carved gun stocks or even boats. 

As summer hits full throttle, don't forget to take in something... or do something... that sparks the duende in your soul. Let the flame burn bright. It can help us press through the toughest days and nights. 

Today, I am grateful for "duende". 

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