Responsible Creativity

The other night over dinner at Chick-Fil-A (mmmm), my husband gave me an awesome pep talk. I (Michayla) was talking through some concerns about work projects, and he shared some fantastic wisdom. He’s an amazing little league coach, so pep talks are a specialty of his :). Here’s the gist of what I pulled out of his healthy dose of perspective.

Anyone in the position of creating something (whether it’s a lesson plan, a piece of art, a proposal, a craft for your Awana Club etc.) has to understand going into it that the project is not about him or her. It’s first, as a Christian, about God. It’s secondarily about the people for whom you are creating.

When you put pressure on yourself to come up with something great or “cool” and you rely on your own cleverness, the project ceases to be great. However, when your motivation is about making something for people that they need and serves them well, then that perspective will keep you pointed in the right direction: away from yourself.

When working on a project, we have to always ask, “What’s the point of this? What’s the ‘why’?” Because it’s not just about creating a neat app, or a cool product, or a clever strategy. It’s about serving. It’s about people. It’s about the Lord. Not about the bottom line, and definitely not about our own self-promotion.

Does that mean you don’t pour your unique passion, energy, and heart into your projects? Of course not. God gave us all unique passion, energy, and hearts for a reason. They are a gift, and they bless people when we use them to serve. We need to use them well.

So, these projects that I’m working on- should I stress about feeling like they aren’t where they should be yet, that they’re not clever enough, or “right” enough? I think, rather, that I should be praying, “God, is this what they need? Is this going to serve them well? Is this going to accomplish what You want to accomplish?” Then the project becomes about His glory and their good, and not about myself or my department.

This is the responsibility behind creativity: setting oneself aside (including all the self-imposed pressure) to create for others in order to honor the Father.

May the amount of time we pour into creating that product or that Large Group Time lesson (whatever the project may be) match the amount of time we are on our knees about what we are creating and who we are creating it for.

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5 responses to “Responsible Creativity

  • Rick Glover

    Well stated, Michayla! Thanks!

  • Jenny

    I love this post Michayla. I have been thinking about these very things so much lately as I work on the Cubbies update. I keep praying, “God, what is on YOUR heart to share with the Cubbies and the leaders?”

    • findingthecurve

      Jenny, thanks for reading! You are doing an incredible job on Cubbies! I’ve been amazed by what you and Alicia have come up with, and the incredible quality I’m seeing tells me that you are letting God guide you as you write/design. Thank you for pursuing God and His desires as you create for these precious little ones. You both are in my prayers!

      • Jenny Jezek

        Thanks so much for these encouraging words, Michayla, and for your prayers. I am deeply grateful.

  • Sheri

    This one hit the spot for me too! It made me think about whatever I create. Does it serve the person that needs to use it? Does it serve the purpose it was created for?

    I agree! Jenny and Alicia are doing a great job! They have listened very well to the voices of those they serve. I am grateful to be on their team!

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