An Artist’s Limits

For so long, I stomped around the boundaries of my ordinary life and repeated Psalm 16: “The boundary lines for me have fallen in pleasant places.”

But I didn’t believe it.

I wanted to believe that the limits around me–those boundary lines of all things physical, financial, relational, emotional–were beautiful and not boring, marvelous and not mundane, but instead I felt so limited.

Today I read a quote from Willa Cather who says, “An artist’s limits are quite as important as his powers. They are definite assets, not a deficiency, and go to form his flavor and personality.”

Limits important? Limits as assets? Limits form flavor? I love it!

What if I thought about every limiting thing in my life as an asset because it’s shaping artful things in my parenting, writing, and teaching? What if I saw the boundary lines as perfecting art in me?

I thought more about boundaries when my youngest daughter told me that cats feels at peace and safe inside a cardboard box, so we should put random boxes around for them to relax in. I saw the image I needed. I’m in the box, relaxing. I’m here, and it’s an asset today.

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