Friday, December 19, 2008

Incarnation vs. Creation

In her essay, "'Tis the Season: Holidays, Harvest, and the Psalms," Lynn Domina says, "For me, and I suspect for many writers and other artists, even for those of us enthusiastically identifying with a Trinitarian tradition, the most compelling divine characteristic is not incarnation but creation" (page 117 of Poets on the Psalms).

We're deep in the season of Advent, so I've already been contemplating the mysteries of incarnation. How many other religions have a god who takes on human form and dwells among us? I've always found that aspect of Christianity compelling.

But I've also always identified with the Creator aspect of God. I especially love the earlier Genesis story of creation (the one that doesn't revolve around Adam and Eve and a snake). God creates all sorts of things and declares them good. Sometimes very good. You never see God saying, "What a lousy rough draft. I'll never be able to do anything with this crap I just created." No. God loves all of the creations.

I feel a poem hovering in the background.

And maybe I'll use God as a model as I approach the new year and think about my writing goals. Maybe, instead of being disgusted at how little I get done, maybe I'll show myself the same kind of love as God does (if only I could just switch gears that easily). Maybe, instead of seeing all the ways that my poems fall short, I'll declare them "Good," and leave it at that.

No comments: