This is the cover of the book I’m presently devouring (with great care). Those are the colored pencils my parents bought me to use in my seventh grade social studies class (we drew and colored and labeled a lot of maps!). Together, these tools are rocking my world these days! God started seriously stirring up artistic expression in me early this year and he continues to send new people and resources across my path to encourage me in this pursuit. In about a week and a half, I get to give a talk on creativity at the Live It Lead It seminar (part of Church Leadership School) but I thought I’d give you a tiny preview of my latest God-whispers on this subject. Hopefully it’ll give you a little bit of freedom in an area where I think most of us struggle.
God loves the things you create. He’s like a proud parent displaying a toddler’s first finger painting. Whether it’s a piece of art, a yummy plate of food, new shelves for the garage, or a fresh arrangement of your bedroom furniture, he thinks your creative work is excellent. He enjoys seeing his kids walk in their identity as creative individuals, formed in his image. His refrigerator is full of your “finger paintings.” Can you picture him calling the angels over and saying, “Look what my kid just did…isn’t it beautiful?”
Here’s the extra cool (and chain-breaking) part: he doesn’t love what you create because it’s perfect. He loves it because you made it.
I think so often we don’t allow ourselves to even try certain things because we think we don’t know enough, or we haven’t been trained how to do it properly, or we’re afraid of failure. There are certainly areas where that fear is healthy (please do not try to perform surgery or fly an airplane without the proper credentials). But catch this: creativity is not one of those areas. So what if you don’t have an art degree? Paint! Who cares if you weren’t a music major? Make up a song and sing it at the top of your lungs! Dance around your living room! Help a kid build a pinewood derby car! Re-organize your workspace! Take up sewing! Pick something that interests you and create…every day. Not only will it make Father God smile, I promise you’ll have more joy in your life.
There is something born within each of us that cries out for creativity. Allow yourself the freedom to practice. Let’s kick fear in the throat and begin to live every day as a creative!
Wanna hear more? Consider the Live It Lead It seminar, happening soon right here in Lansing. Contact Mount Hope Church for more information.