Saturday, July 12, 2008

Creative Christianity

Yesterday I attended a seminar on this topic during the camp where I am leading worship (excellent job Jeremy, Kaitlyn and Robbie!). It got me pretty fired up about some things that have been on my mind. Living creatively for the glory of God and how that idea could give flight to the faith of millions. Here is the thought: we’re built to imagine and our brains are designed to do so much more than sustain life. They are wired to bring things into existence. Because of our unique creative and imaginative potential, we have been designed to give birth to things that never existed before. Not reproduced things, but introduced things…something from nothing kind of stuff. It is the part of us the Bible refers to when it says we are made in the image of God (Gen. 1:26). You don’t look like God so much as you might your mama, but you surely are assembled with the capacities to think like a creator. Your imagination is what sparks you to act in faith. Every “what if” starts in your brain as an imagined thought and your faith is what brings it to an answer.

Every call of God starts with the Spirit of God speaking the rumors of potential into your mind. “Go, Send, Lead, Run, Fight, Fly, Sing, Preach, Give, Love, Plead, Risk, Change, Dance…” all of that starts in your head, and struggles toward to surface of existence, compelled by faith in the God who calls you…and remember the one who calls you is faithful (1 Cor. 1:9)

So, consider this as you live and worship creatively today…your imagination is the place where future greatness gets planted. It’s the soil where God sows influence and hope, revival and art, community and passion, all for His great glory. Your imagination unleashed for the glory of God is the most unstoppable weapon against the forces of darkness and by the same measure the most liberating force for the worshipping Christian. Bob Pierce imagined World Vision and that compassionate thought feeds, clothes and heals hundreds of thousands every year. Billy Graham imagined an evangelistic ministry that shared the Gospel with the world…now millions know Christ because a “what if” was answered. John the Baptist believed he was the fulfillment of an ancient prophesy, was not afraid to express what he felt from the inside out and he made a pathway for Jesus to take center stage. All of these were very imaginative ideas and wildly creative people.

Here are five tips on unleashing God’s potential for your life through your imagination.

Use it…let your brain in on what your heart comes up with and see how far “what if” can take you. Write a song or a book or a poem. Build a museum. Dream something and then do it.

Feed it…consume beauty. Fill your mind with things of great aesthetic value. Music, art, literature, sermons, songs, dance, heroism. Flood your mind with things already born of great imagination. Launch ye therefore from these!

Surrender it…abandon your safe places and default modes of thought. Explore new territory and test the boundaries of who you are now. Look beyond, to see a different potential for your life. Let go and fear not. (Psalm 27:1)

Engage it…your thoughts are meaningless until expressed. The old phrase, “it’s the thought that counts” was probably coined by a person who never bought birthday presents and failed to leave a mark on the world. Impact happens when what you imagine collides with how you live. That’s when you start seeing God’s glory revealed in your life for Him.

Defend it…the enemy wants to kill you and I think he always starts in your imagination. Envy, strife, corruption, lies, jealousy, hatred, indifference, greed and lust are all sins sown into the mind. Planted by Satan to subtly corrupt your imagination until who you are and how you live ultimately serves his interests…to shame the name of God. Stand firm…Eph. 6:13

Think creatively. Act courageously. See “what if” happen in your life.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I went to that workshop also when we were at crossroads. They did a fantastic job. It really made you think about the daily things in your life and how you can make a difference. I have challenged our youth on the way home from camp to take their advice. You and your band were also wonderful as usual. Thanks for a great camp week.