Author Tuesday, author Tuesday! You know what that means: I’ve got another friend I’d like for you to meet. Today’s star is Gayla Irwin, author of Creative Moments of Grace: An Interactive Journaling Experience. Gayla has this uncanny way of combining (Christian) spirituality with creativity, so read on to learn more. And, as per the usual, leave a comment, win a copy!
Hi Gayla: welcome! Tell us a bit about yourself, will you? I’m a creative, artsy type who has been in ministry for 30 years. Currently, my husband and I work together as executive directors of a retreat house in Denver, Colorado. I am passionate about helping people connect to Jesus through creativity.
Let’s talk about your book: what, in a nutshell, is your book about anyway? Creative Moments of Grace is a hand-lettered, interactive journal, chock full of creative ideas for prayer and meditating on Scripture. Created to be interactive, it offers lots of questions for journaling and simple, fun, imaginative ways to help us grow.
Do tell, what was the inspiration behind it? Really, the power of creativity is the inspiration behind it. I believe that God made us all creative but sometimes we settle for formulaic ways to connect with God. And, I’ve personally experienced that practicing creativity is a lovely gift and tool that God can use for healing in our broken places.
How do you hope readers will be changed by your words? I hope that it will lead to deepening intimacy with God, especially for those of us who lean toward left-brain thinking.
When I was a new Christian, my time with God seemed kind of perfunctory. Like it was something to be checked off a list, similarly to how I often feel about going to the gym. It didn’t usually seem to lead me closer to Jesus…and it often felt like a fail. God is so gracious and over time, I did see growth in my faith. But when I started adding artistic expressions to my time with Jesus, it seemed to lodge in my heart and my thoughts in deeper, more meaningful ways. AND it brought me hope and joy.
Lest we forget to ask, how have YOU been changed by writing the book? Creating this book has been a gift. I have loved the process of thinking through how to communicate themes from the Bible and considering the images and questions might lead to a fuller, more personal understanding of specific passages. I have been pushed outside my comfort zone, leading to more dependence on Jesus… and an awareness of God’s goodness guiding me along this path.
How and where can we find you on the internet? You can find me on Instagram at @artmeditations or at gaylairwin.com.
It’s true: Creative Moments of Grace is just as gorgeous and creatively-inspired as it sounds. If you’d like to win a copy of the interactive journal, leave a comment for Gayla below (and, in addition to encouraging her, throw in a “Pick me!” as well). Contest ends Sunday, May 28th. Good luck!
*Post contains Amazon Affiliate links: click on one and you help support my nasty reading habits. Thanks be to YOU!0