“We don’t want to feel less when we have finished a book; we want to feel that new possibilities of being have been opened to us.”
Creating art can be a very spiritual experience? But how much does a spiritual life affect art when it’s created? Madeleine L’Engle, the author of A Wrinkle in Time and numerous other books, explores the bonds between faith and art in Walking on Water: Reflections of Faith and Art. Her honest thoughts of how her faith journey can be seen in her writing gives great encouragement to Christians who create, but don’t fit the “Christian art/music/book” mold.
After reading A Light So Lovely: The Spiritual Legacy of Madeleine L’Engleby Sarah Arthur, I decided to read more books by Madeleine L’Engle during the next few years. I talked with my grandmother about L’Engle after I sent her my copy of A Light So Lovely and she recommended Walking on Water. It was several weeks before the book became available from my library as an ebook.
The book starts out saying that by labeling something as a Christian creation does not make it good. Bad Christian art is still bad art. Bad Christian music is still bad music. Since the act of creating something is itself a process that comes from the Creator Himself, everything created can have a bit of God in it without having to be labeled “Christian.” The most fascinating aspect of the book is her views on how maybe humans have forgotten how to walk on water since Jesus as fully man could so such a thing – Peter did, too. She also talks about how to write for children – it must be good and true and show love.
As a writer, I really appreciated reading L’Engle’s perspective on writing. I am encouraged that I can just use my skills and gifts and God can send a message through that without having to be labeled a “Christian” or “Catholic” writer. I just need to be a good writer and write a story worth reading – it must be good and true and show love. Creators of music, art and writing, along with L’Engle fans, will enjoy Walking on Water.