Observing the Creative Life


I’m writing a new book, and this time I get to do it with a friend.

Wendy and I have been batting around this idea of inspiration, of motherhood, and of creativity for several years now, and as we continue to flesh it out, a message is taking shape, and together we are diving in so that we can share this message with all of you.

This process is requiring more of my time, but that’s okay. I don’t mind sleeping a little less. I consider it training for bringing home a new baby in a couple of months.

I also find myself researching constantly this idea of creativity, and how it fits into life, into motherhood, and into ministry. Everywhere I turn these days, it seems I run into examples of creative people making big impacts. I can hardly have a conversation anymore without some sort of bell sounding in my head:

This person is a creative. Observe! Observe! Observe!

Historical works and figures are not left out of my observations, either. Yesterday at church we discussed Psalm 22. At one point, one of the women in our group made the observation that David seemed a bit “eccentric.” His writings were revelations, they were songs, they were musings – for heaven’s sake, the man danced in nothing but a linen ephod, despite being king!

As she spoke, I had to bite my tongue to keep from blurting out, “David was a creative!”

Indeed, many creatives can be easily labeled as eccentric. Some may even dance their praise.

Creatives view the world differently, looking at life through a different lens. Writers don’t see words, they see stories that move and come to life. Artists don’t see colors, they see vivid shapes that form on canvas, in marble, and in blocks of wood. Bakers don’t see ingredients, they see bold cakes, artistic cookies, and people gathered to enjoy one another over a scone and some tea. Jewelry makers don’t see a hunk of metal – they see a necklace, a message adorning hope and beauty to the world.

I could go on and on, but the point is this: creative people are everywhere. They are all around us, and the more I observe them, the more I am in awe of this process of creating as an act of praise.

I hear music differently these days, because I imagine the process the songwriter went through to pen those words. (And it’s to be generally understood that I’m talking about good music here – not the teeny bopper pop fluff that my kids force me to listen to on a day to day basis). I feel the rhythms deeper as I imagine the pianist at the helm of her craft, or the drummer pounding in time with his heart.

As I research what it means to live this life with a creative bent, I grow more in awe of my Creator as well. Last night, I had the privilege of enjoying a sunset cruise in the Gulf of Mexico with some friends. As the sun dipped behind the clouds, and the sky around us lit up in red, orange, and yellow, I couldn’t help but smile at the master strokes of the One who Created it all.

It’s a privilege to live this life creatively, and if you are doing so, I urge you to keep doing it. Photographers, keep on capturing God’s creation, and revealing the world through your lens as He sees it through His.

Writers, pen your words as an act of worship.

Singers, do not hold back in fear or shame, but let loose a new song as an offering of praise.

To all my creative friends and readers, I offer you this – your gift is worth sharing with the world, and your eccentricities make your gift that much more beautiful to watch.

As this message and this book continue to come together, I will continue to share encouragement. We get one life – one chance to fully live out that to which we have been called. Creative friends – live your art out loud.  

Dance it if you have to!

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