A Different Take on Creativity


Here I am in the marching band at Young Life’s Malibu Camp in Canada.

Happy New Year everyone, I hope your Holidays were truly blessed. I love the Christmas season and this one was especially great.

Since I’m involved in the business of writing and illustrating, I get a chance to be around some really creative people. It’s kind of cool to be “creative” nowadays- you know someone who’s talented in the arts, music, painting, writing, dance, all of those things that we deem “creative”. And those are really cool, it’s so great to see someone with amazing talent using his or her gifts to create a work of art, a story or a piece of music.

But what about the people who aren’t artistic? So often I meet people- almost always adults– who tell me they can’t draw a straight line. I love how Red Skelton used to answer that. He’d say “So draw an earthquake.”

But seriously what about the people who aren’t “creative”? Well, in my humble opinion there’s no such thing. “What?” You may ask, “you haven’t seen me draw or heard me sing and there’s no way on earth I could ever come up with a book idea!”

Well, Genesis 1:1 says “In the beginning God created the Heavens and the Earth.” Obviously He’s the most creative Being in the entire universe. And He did it all with a Word. He spoke things into existence. But then Genesis 1:26  says that we are created In His Image and Likeness. That says to me that if we’re created in His Image then we are by nature creative beings. But we’ve got to expand our view of creativity. I have several friends who are car mechanics. I believe that what they do all day long is super creative. First of all they can understand how that whole engine thing works. That’s amazing in itself. Then they use their creative ability to solve the problem and get the car running again. Now that’s creative. How about a mom with two toddlers running around? Do you think it takes creativity to manage the household as well as help shape the lives of these young children? Look around you- there’s creative people all over. A teacher who spends time with a child so they can keep up, an Emergency Room nurse who helps diagnose and treat a frightened patient, a computer programmer, a Pastor, a farmer, car salesman, personal trainer, shop owner, pharmacist, well, you get the idea.

We’re all creative in our way and in the image of God. Take a couple minutes and think about the special gifts that God has implanted inside of you. What can you do that other people can’t? What are some gifts, talents and abilities that are uniquely yours? And how can you use them- whether they seem creative or not- to help people get closer to God? That might just be part of His plan for you. And me.