I need to create. Not sure why, but I need it. Sometimes I need to make up silly songs, or take hours creating connection of words strung together. Creation brings a rise in my posture, a joy in my heart and these wonderful tingles that run down my arm.
We are all creators, and when we create is when, I believe, we are closest to the image of who God – our Creator, wants us to be. He has instilled in us a desire to take nothing and make something. Whether it is a drawing, a house, a process, a customer happy, an emoji, a kick butt exercise program or something to clip our socks together – just do what we are here to do, create MORE something.
Watch children they are always creating, most times they look like messes to our underdeveloped eyes – look again!
My granddaughter Sofie, who just turned two, likes to culla, culla, culla. Why she says thing in threes, I don’t know, but I do know what she’s wants – to color.
Give her a pen, paper, some crayons and let her go! She might just make one marking on a GIANT sheet of paper, or take days squiggling lines in various colors. She proclaims I am done, and grabs another piece of gigantic paper. That little drawing or circle or dot on the page is complete, finished, a job well done – in her uncorrupted mind.
What do you see from Sofie’s picture?
– a waste of paper
– another tree being slayed for Sofie’s insatiable creativity
I see a masterpiece that is a riot to watch as she creates. When she is done, it is finished, and a new work of art must begin! No one can question her creativity for it is perfect, in her little head and in my heart – because it is her creation. “Mine” she will shout out for all to hear as she shares her creation.
Kids are unencumbered with judgment when they do their creative thing. And what a beautiful sight it is to behold. Last week I attended daily Mass and this young boy was going to town signing Alleluia while doing this sign language thing that they do. The excitement on his face was breathtaking and heartbreaking. For this moment now and the moment only a few days later where I saw him again – still.
Someone had taken the dance out of him and it hurt for me to watch. I wept and I believe God wept as well. He gives a beautiful gift to us and some well intention somebody crushes it. We are devastated and that gift might never again see the light of day. It wants to, we won’t let it – we want to protect it.
One of the aspects I love about the work I do is to create a safe place where people can reveal that hidden gift. They think I am relentless as I ask them to share success stories, after success stories, to go deeper, go further back and I am not satisfied until I see their truth.
Their truth can surface subtlety at first, and then I see a spark flash across their face, their eyes light up or the eyebrows lift. Or I hear the shift in their voice, sometimes it rises or a lilt is lifted. That gift cautiously ventures out into the light, sometimes to be pulled back in, when I have to coax it back out – with a question.
What about “highlighter”, “safety”, “fixer” is important to you?
My favorite way of seeing that gift expressed is when a giggle erupts and spills out of them. Some word, an unimportant or by no means funny word to me, brings out delight. I ask for a rewind, say highlighter again, their face lights up, the giggle erupts and this time the tone in their voice is childlike – yep that is me!
To see grown men who are rough and tough on the outside utter a word that softens their whole persona is breathtaking. Nothing is more beautiful for me to watch them regain power that they once had, and was safely hidden away for way too long.
What I AM seeing is the face of freedom! And then my heartbreaks because someone will tell them again to tone it down, don’t bring that back here, we don’t want that kind of stuff here. We don’t want your best stuff, we want that other stuff. And they stuff it back down, they hide that beautiful light of freedom and creativity – their gift.
Don’t go shining so brightly, we might make other folks feel bad.
But it doesn’t! Make them feel bad. It makes them feel good to watch our giftedness, to be part of our creation, to snatch it up and stand in awe of it, we want MORE of it!
Why? The face of creative freedom is beautiful!
How do I know?
Because we pay so much for it.
We pay to be awed – watch an artist on stage, watch a player on the field, pay millions for a brilliant piece of art, or buy millions of records of an artist. Watching anyone working with excellence – draws us in and we want MORE, we won’t settle for anything less. That is why we watch a sunset, or the moon rise. Why we love to laugh, love to cry, because we love to feel the connection of creation.
And when we are willing to pour MORE out, to give ourselves by shining that precious gift that was bestowed at our creation by our Creator we get MORE back. MORE peace, MORE joy, MORE love and MORE of everything that is good.
And when we just say yes, and let go of our creation, the Lord again weeps, but this time He weeps for joy, watching His precious child use HIS precious gift, given for our good and HIS glory.