CREATIVE SPARKS

BE BRAVE. BE CURIOUS. CREATE!

Though few of us would call ourselves creative, that amazing grace-gift is woven straight into our DNA. As we engage with God, He ignites our curiosity, waking us to wonder and the joy of possibility. Today, be brave. Be curious. Create!

It was by Him that everything was created: the heavens, the earth, all things within and upon them, all things seen and unseen … Every detail was crafted through His design, by His own hands, and for His purposes … It is His hand that holds everything together.                            (Colossians 1:16-17 VOICE)

WE ARE CREATED TO CREATE

 

Creativity is written in our DNA by the One who created everything from nothing. The One who refracts three primary colors into nearly 10 million hues distinguishable by the human eye. The One who formed the human ear to discern almost 330,000 frequencies and the human nose to detect more than one trillion scents.

We were created by the same One who created more than 8 million species of animals, 32,000 species of fish, a one million species of insects, more than 9,000 species of birds, 60,000 species of trees, 12,000 species of grass, and 391,000 species of flowering plants.

The creativity of God is spectacular! We witness it in every breath of every hour of every single day. That same Creator has breathed life into almost one hundred billion beloved humans since the beginning of time, each with a unique, one-of-a-kind personality and individually distinguishable fingerprints. “No two alike. There has never been another one just like this one, and there never will be again,” said Rev. Karl Schimpf as he blessed each new baby brought into the world.

 

CREATIVITY IS LIFELONG PURSUIT

 

Every person since the beginning of time has been, is now, and will be until the end of time, creative.

Ellen Mady, wrote, “A sacred touch, a sacred breath, a sacred thought, permeates the nature of man’s relationship with God. The sacredness of man’s existence springs forth from the moment of creation and reflects the image of God inherent in each and every person. It is by virtue of being made in the image and likeness of God that we possess reason and freedom, which come together in our capacity for creativity. All creation was thought of by God … The moment the spirit hovered over the waters (Genesis 1:2) and creation came into being was just the beginning.”

We, the Body of Christ, are one great big, extravagant, creative community — and together, we represent the fullness of our Creator God here on earth. Yet relatively few of us would call ourselves creative.

Why? 

Somewhere along the path to adulthood, many of us took off our creative hats, set them aside, and never looked back, instead investing our time and talents in “more productive” ways.

 

CREATIVE EXPRESSION IS A LABOR OF LOVE

 

We forget that creativity isn’t easy. It is less lightning bolt moments of inspiration and far more labors of love. It is time poured out, courage plucked up, curiosity piqued, wonder and daring to dream, determination, perseverance, sweat, tears, and often, a whole lot of failure.

Writing isn’t easy even for published authors. Photographers joke that their first 10,000 images are practice, but that statement is truer than not. Master mechanics pour years into training and thousands of hard-earned dollars into tools. To earn first chair concertmaster, a violinist will practice an average of 10,000 hours. A house isn’t designed or built (or even painted!) overnight.

For many of us, the creative journey is filled with missteps and flopped soufflés, dropped stitches and rejected manuscripts, major fumbles and spectacular failures. Yet even in fear, even with anxiety crawling up the back of our necks, even in sorrow, even at our most abject, when we create, we reflect something of God back to God.

 

WE CREATE TO BE LIKE JESUS

 

Creativity is vulnerable. Fear of failure can tempt us to step away and play it safe. Yet each time we lean into the Presence of Jesus as we wait on a table, pluck the guitar strings, plant a row of seed, knead bread dough, throw a pot, cut or color a client’s hair, listen to a patient’s heartbeat or a little bit of their story, we fall a little more in love with God and His beloved creation.

As Mike Romero so aptly wrote, “It’s impossible to lack creativity while standing in the presence of the Creator.”

There is profound joy in creating.  

We create because we were designed to create. It’s written in our DNA — and every time we create, we become a little more like Jesus.

In his book Culture Making: Recovering Our Creative Calling, Andy Crouch writes, “I wonder what we Christians are known for in the world outside our churches. Are we known as critics, consumers, copiers, condemners of culture? I’m afraid so. Why aren’t we known as cultivators — people who tend and nourish what is best in human culture, who do the hard and painstaking work to preserve the best of what people before us have done? Why aren’t we known as creators — people who dare to think and do something that has never been thought or done before, something that makes the world more welcoming and thrilling and beautiful?”

 

Today, be brave. Be curious. Create!

 

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STORY

YOUR STORY MATTERS!

YOUR STORY MATTERS!

Chronic illness can be isolating and lonely, but sharing our stories can open a door, extending hope, and sometimes sparking a life-giving, life-changing conversation with someone else along the way. We’d love to hear your story.

POETRY

Poetry

POETRY • MINISTRY OF VERSE

Poetry invites us explore the rhythm and sway of words as we wrestle with the symptoms, confusion, loss, grief, emotion, and uncertainty of chronic illness in a sometimes more accessible way.

ALLEGORY

Allegory

ALLEGORY • ARTISTIC STORYTELLING

Allegory is a beautiful, artistic form of storytelling that weaves difficult or abstract truths in ways that are easily relatable and understandable. Meaning is often woven through places and characters named for their qualities, strengths or weaknesses.

PHOTOGRAPHY

YOUR STORY MATTERS!

THE JOY OF PHOTOGRAPHY

NOTICE. CLICK. TREASURE. ENJOY!
Photography invites us to rediscover the wonder and beauty of God’s creation – vibrant colors, light and shadows, the everyday and the unusual – one-click at a time.

CONTEMPLATIVE COLORING

Called to Create • A Journey of Surprises

Coloring Your Way Closer to God

Contemplative coloring draws us into the presence of God as we release stress, anxiety, and worries. Color you way closer to God and explore your creativity with hues of red, yellow, blue, vibrant, and pastel.

PRAYER SHAWLS

Prayer Shawls • Kindness with Every Stitch

KINDNESS WITH EVERY STITCH

Prayer shawls are blessings of community, kindness, comfort, and compassion, stitched with prayer and gifted to those who are struggling with illness, pain, anxiety, depression, loneliness, loss, or grief – a gift to maker and receiver.

METAPHOR

METAPHORS

METAPHOR • THE LANGUAGE OF PAIN

What we experience because of chronic illness, anxiety, depression, or mental illness can not only be difficult to explain, but difficult for those who don’t experience it to understand. But metaphors can be a useful tool.

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