What does a child do when faced with a blank sheet of paper?
With no life-draining sources of comparison, they grab the first crayon that inspires them and off they go. Lost in imagination they create a masterpiece of scribbles.
When a class of kindergartners is asked if they are artists all hands raise. But by the time fifth grade rolls around only a handful still sees themselves that way.
Do you think the inner creativity that is woven into our beings has been lost? Did you ever wonder if it has found other outlets? Creativity is not just artwork, but can be seen in every walk of life. Read this definition and see if you agree.
Creativity: the ability to make new things or think of new ideas.
That means the mama adding her own twist to dinner in the evenings is creative. The woman who can organize her space with her own unique flair is creative. An exhausted mother finding the perfect blend of cuddling, feeding and playing with her baby is creative.
This wider view of creativity is what I want you to see. What do you do in your life that is easy? For someone else it’s incredibly difficult.
That’s why we need to celebrate exactly who we are and figure out how to fit our unique gifts, talents and abilities into the mix of this world.
You are needed and necessary.
Currently I am helping lead a class called Undivided, a racial reconciliation class that started in Cincinnati. This class would not have happened without the other people on my team.
I am a dreamer and a reader which means I had a big vision and lots of book knowledge, but no idea how to implement a class. One of my other teammates used to create and facilitate classes professionally. Without her, there would be no class syllabus. My other teammate has a sharp, organized mind who was able to see connections in our planning discussions that we may have missed. Finally, our team lead had the resources to get things moving.
If any one of us had stayed comfortable, this class would not be happening.
We all had to step out in the brave realization that who we are matters.
How is that done?
The very first sentence of the bible states, “In the beginning God created.” If man was made in his image then we are creative beings.
We have to let that sink deeply into the core of who we are and actually believe it.
Believe the beautiful truth of Psalm 139 that states in the message version: Body and soul, I am marvelously made!
Notice that exclamation point? Say that phrase over and over and over again until you are saying it with confidence and joy with that exclamation tacked on the end!
That’s the beginning of perfect love’s truth pouring into your body and soul to fill all the darkness with light.
Start before you’re ready.
It may be painful to say those words above. Life is hard and discouraging, the world makes us feel like we’re never enough and we may have memories of hurts in the past that hinder a phrase like that being spoken.
Write it on a post it and place it on your mirror.
To start, the brave thing may be reading it.
Bravery is an interesting thing. The smallest step gives us a little bit more. With each small step bravery continues to grow until suddenly the things we feared don’t seem so big anymore.
Give yourself permission.
In Braving the Wilderness, researcher Brene Brown talked about how she typically studied her life when she was nervous. She would watch her life as if she was another person and not engage.
Then she was invited to meet Oprah and be on Super Soul Sunday. That day she wrote herself a permission slip to live in this moment and have fun, be silly and be herself.
It worked. She had a blast with Oprah and was asked to film an additional episode. She's used permission slips ever since.
She said a permission slip is one thing, but you still have to get on the bus. That day she wrote out the intention and actively pursued it.
Write your permission slip for today, but don’t forget to do it.
Grow your purpose small and slow.
Your gifts may seem small to you, but I promise you they are not insignificant to God’s plan.
I used to worry that “just being a mom” was not a ministry or mission field for the Lord. But how incredible is it to have the opportunity to shape these tiny humans into adults? To pour the love and confidence of Christ into their little minds is one of the most powerful missions on the planet.
And it goes completely unnoticed by the world’s standards.
That's why we need community surrounding us with truth and encouragement.
The whole month of March is focused on how we can become more confident in who we were created to be.
Remember the child with a blank sheet of paper?
Channel that inner, creative child inside you. Write out the permission slip for her to be brave today, then let her do it.