Ribbons ‘n’ Roses — Reflections on Creative Arts as Ministry for The High Calling

This essay was written several months ago and shifted between editors at The High Calling. It’s posting today during a week of emphasis on visual and creative arts as ministry. Click here to read the entire piece. . .

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The sun would just be coming through the early morning clouds as I drove through the quiet, on my way to the Flower Mart in downtown Los Angeles. It was part of the ritual, the dance, of doing this work that I loved. I only did it part time and I only did it for seven years, but I loved it.

It began with our eldest daughter’s wedding. We were on a budget, I enjoyed working with flowers and I saw an opportunity inviting me to leap. So I jumped in with both feet. I applied for a resale number from the state of California, hired a friend to design a logo and business cards, and “Ribbons ‘n’ Roses” was born.

I worked with a good friend to produce beautiful floral décor for about two weddings or parties every month. I loved the creativity, the people, and the beauty of each arrangement, but I suppose my favorite part of all was that early morning drive to the Flower Mart, a place packed with rich delights and unholy confusion. Most of the mart is contained in one enormous, two-story warehouse with scores of individual flower vendors and one large supply center. Driving into the garage while it is nearly dark and then emerging into this brightly lit, bustling activity center is an exercise in delightful cognitive dissonance.

Carts and trucks are loaded, advice is given, cash is handed over, packages are wrapped—all of it infused with the sweet scent of flowers. With the car loaded and my bills paid, I would usually end the morning with breakfast at the adjacent Chinese diner. I would listen to conversations between buyers and sellers as they ate their char siu pork, rice, and eggs, absorbing as much information as I could.

I had no training, you see . . . 

Come on over the The High Calling to find out more . . .

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Comments

  1. Gwen Acres says:

    Roses and ribbons, celebrations and ceremony…” These are a few of my favourite things.” Beauty feeds my soul. I was never quite sure if I was allowed to think of it as a spiritual longing or gift. Thank you Diana for the light you shed on this. Years ago I was the wedding coordinator at Montecito Covenant Church, for a while. I loved doing that as it satisfied so much of what puts joy in my heart. I helped do flowers at the outdoor wedding of Brooke Gloger(think that was the name) on Padaro Lane. So much beauty… puts me in touch with the divine!

    • I had forgotten you did that for a while. Brooke was married about 15 years ago now, I think. And I truly do believe that our longing for beauty is a gift from God, a reflection of God’s image in us.

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  1. […] This post was written in penance for an insensitive email I sent to Diana Trautwein in response to her wonderful post:  Ribbons ‘n’ Roses — Reflections on Creative Arts as Ministry for The High Calling […]