INSPIRATION AND ENCOURAGEMENT can come from many places. For some, they’re found in a lifetime of work from a literary giant. For others, they emerge, unexpectedly, from an indomitable 16-year-old prophet with preternatural vision and determination. And many of us are heartened, and challenged to see differently, by the inspired imagination of artists—from a poet who urges us to “discover the truth of wonder and rejoice in the silent voice of God” (p. 39) to creatives around the world who transform the tools of trauma into affirmations of healing, redemption, and resistance.
But art is not passive. For art to be meaningful, to be “successful,” requires engagement—and a willingness to allow our most closely held assumptions, norms, and habits of thinking and being to be shattered. Truly (and vulnerably) engaging with art requires moral courage, but it promises unexpected rewards as we’re opened to new possibilities—and even new sources of inspiration in a world that sorely needs them.