Reading books by noted authors depicting their challenges (emotional and physical ) may cause you to second guess if being creative is actually what you want to sink your teeth into. The encouragement you were looking for, the kudos, the high fives to satisfy an unmet need might be smacked with their own angst describing their own stress while trying to complete a project.
A short book “THE WRITING LIFE” by Annie Dillard is a great read describing the normal non glorious life in the actual procedure of being a writer. To accomplish your literary art you need to do two things.-
- Sit Down.
- Put words on the screen or the paper.
Does that sound very exciting? What if the words do not come? What if the line of words you put down one minute look horrible the next and you wasted half of an hour of your time? (the dishes are calling to be washed).
You have been called to express. It is part of your inner being. If the life you live has also said “Yes” to Jesus, you have said yes to bringing His Kingdom to earth as it is in Heaven. Your calling is to Create for the Kingdom.
You NEED to create ( I am not limiting this to writing. Put whatever God is calling to you to do)
These quotes from Annie’s book can apply to all creatives.
“’One of the few things I know about writing is this: spend it all, shoot it, play it lose it all, right away, every time.’ 1
‘The impulse to save something good for a better place later is the signal to spend it now.’ 2
‘Anything you do not give freely and abundantly becomes lost to you.’” 3
What is creativity to you?
Is it putting words on paper? Any student in a sophomore English class can do that to pass a class. Taking pictures with a point and shoot camera? All the aunts coming to the summer reunion can do the same thing. A creative has a deep desire to take a rough path expressing life through words, will embark on an artistic adventure with the canvas, will see through a lens and express what they see with their souls.
Creativity is worship.
The two book, I mentioned in my last post, The Creative Call by Janice Elsheimer and a million little ways by Emily p. Freeman have been great helps in freeing my creative thinking process. I am going to propose to you a statement simultaneously approached in both books. This statement does not deal with a certain technique or style. It does not give you tips on building your platform. This connects you and your creativity.
In the comment line below, feel free to finish this statement:
The words that reflect how I feel in/when creating are:
Be as candid as you wish. If you are honest, the response may surprise you.
I will share a few of my own to get you going.
Humble, (I get to play in God’s Kingdom )
Awestruck (This is fantastic)
WOW ( Did I write that? Did that come from my camera? COOL)
Excited( Ideas, Feelings, Emotions, flows around my head. With typing and writing , a tangible essence appears)
Worshipful (Taking the beauty I receive both easy or harsh. I make a tangible sacrifice of praise.)
Full of wonder!
Fearful (Am I really supposed to be doing this?)
Guilty (This is not really serving.)
Not good enough. Not bringing in money –( Comparing my work to others so the time and money I spend is really a waste.)
With thoughts such as these, no wonder the full creative flow of many people is being hindered.
In the artists, when the the burning fire of creativity is hindered by frostiness of negative emotions, nothing can flow.
Where are you in your creative process? As you have allowed the reality of creativity to be come alive within you, do you see God taking you on a path of deeper freedom? Not “only to make, but also to create”
To be an artist is a challenge.
Allow God to gently pull back the carpet in areas He wants to bring healing. The feelings of guilt, comparison, not good enough, and even “this is a waste of time and money” may be a result of how you feel about yourself. Does God want to set you free concerning deeper issues?
Take time ,#goslow. What is God doing to make you become more the creative He intended for you in the first place? Annie Dillard states that sadly we can limit the freedom God wants to express through us.
Engage in what God is doing in you!
The artist, writer, creative He has called you to be has a purpose in His Kingdom. The more we are free of the junk clogging our pipes, we are able to receive and flow with joy in the gifts God gave to us.
10 “All who are skilled among you are to come and make everything the Lord has commanded.
Exodus 35: 10 NIV
Two extra thoughts to ponder
- Are you limiting yourself in creating with total abandonment because of inner fears i.e. rejection, comparison, or past family comments?
- Do you keep from completing projects for the same reasons or have you just lost your dream?
Feel free to leave your thoughts on this subject. We are all this road to discover and release our creativity together.
1Annie Dillard, THE WRITING LIFE, ( New York :Harper Perennial ) ©1990 p.78
2Dillard, THE WRITING LIFE,p78
3Dillard, THE WRITING LIFE, p79