27 September 2011
I have big news
I'm headed to gjilan, kosovo with a group of artists from my church this friday. we'll be working with high school art students there as well as holding workshops for the greater art community.
I suppose I've sort of been sitting on this news for a while. wanting to write about it, unsure how or where to start. but now it's here and I'm all out of time. I am in full blown preparation mode and navigating batty pre-travel chaos. if I had the time, I'd tell you all about the country of kosovo. I'd tell you how newly independent and young they are, how 70 percent of the population is under the age of 30. I'd tell you how they're still recovering from a devastating war, how they struggle with a poor infrastructure and economy, a whopping unemployment rate of 40-50 percent. I'd also tell you how hopeful they are. the most hopeful of all the balkans, even in the face of serious struggle.
I'm not going because I believe I can fix any of these problems. or because I believe I can fix anyone. I'm going because I believe art is a powerful way to connect with people. I believe it transcends language and a mess of barriers. I believe it gives voice to the voiceless. most importantly, I believe in how profoundly it reflects the image of God, the ultimate creator, thus connecting us to him in deep, meaningful ways.
the truth is that I'm humbled by this whole thing. I'm going as a teacher but I'm pretty sure I'll come out on the other side the learner.