Monday, May 6, 2013

Releasing the Creative Wonders Within, Part 2

Last week I wrote about part one of the creative process: just go do it. There is discipline involved in this soul-healing act of creating. Sitting down in your creative space is half the battle. But there's another part too, and that is learning to silence the critic in your own head.

It's not good enough. I don't like this part of it. This isn't how I thought it would turn out. I like hers better....

It's kind of a metaphor for life, isn't it? We look at our circumstances and think we're not doing well enough at life. We feel like we're failing someone. Or everyone. We don't like what's happening around us. Things don't turn out like we expected them to, and we would rather have someone else's life. We acutely feel the disconnect between the-way-it-was-supposed-to-be and the-way-it-is. The curse of sin and death is all around us.

So, what should we do about it? And how does this relate to creativity? I think the way we are supposed to face life is to focus on the constant of God's character and filter our impression of life through the lens of that truth. If you look at the book of Job in the Bible, Job's problem wasn't that bad things happened to him and his friends gave him bad advice (although both of those things are true); his problem was that he lost perspective. He began to view God in terms of his experiences rather than viewing his experiences through the unchanging truth of who God is. God didn't change, and His love for Job didn't change, but Job allowed his circumstances to deceive him. He began to suspect God rather than trusting Him.

I think all of this relates to the creative process. The most important aspect of who you are is that you are created by and loved by the almighty God. And if you rest in that truth, the flaws in your creations don't matter so much. You can ease up on the negative self-talk and enjoy creating because you know your Heavenly Father delights in you and in all you do in His name. Just as you delight in everything your child lovingly creates for you, God lovingly delights in YOU, and in everything that you pour out of your soul and into your creations. Your accomplishments start to not matter so much, because you know deep in your soul that you are loved absolutely. And when you feel that way, you are freed up to enjoy releasing everything God put inside you without worrying about what others think.
The just-turned-three-year-old's self-portrait.

The almost-six-year-old mainly draws monsters these days.

Something I created this week.

So, dear sister, I hope that today you know that you are loved, and I hope that you know that no matter what your life looks like God is still good and He will always love you and work for your good, and I hope that the deep knowledge of those truths enables you to live free from self-criticism, free to be all that God created you to be.

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