“One of the difficulties with the creative life is that when we have creative breakthroughs, they may look and even be experienced as breakdowns.” – Julia Cameron
As a kid I had to chase them; those moments too good not to capture through word or paint or camera. I lived for those moments. Those glimpses when the rest of the world seemed so small and the creative breakthrough so big. To me those moments made complete sense and I just knew I was created to run after them. But to those around me I was confusing and hard to understand. I was different and maybe a hint of crazy because I’d leave a party to sit in a quiet corner looking up at the stars. It was who I was.
I didn’t always embrace the creative being in me, though. In fact, many of my – childhood corner staring up at the sky moments – were hidden in a stash under my bed deemed as creative nonsense that makes no sense. And for the longest time, I thought (or rather, believed) that’s all my being would ever be. Creative nonsense.
But so often the things we deem as unusable, God breaks right through and uses them. Learning that has been the biggest breakthrough of my life. Because I am a creative being and I’m not afraid to own that now.
I’m a Creative Arts Pastor with which comes great responsibility in sharing those moments. Those ones too good not to capture through word or paint or camera. I chase those moments more than I ever have because it’s become a necessity. It’s why I was created. And the reality that I get to do that now as a living, completely blows the mind of a little girl with crushed dreams who threw her box of creative nonsense in the trash. Back then I was so far detached f rom understanding that God goes before; now I’m so detached to that truth I cling to it. And my creative box has multiplied and it sits on my desk and overflows on my kitchen table and on the walls and onto a church platform.
Not everyone gets it, the creative soul that is. I don’t either but I’m learning. Julia Cameron is one of my favorite authors and she captures the artistic soul in such a brilliant and breathable way. Taken from her book The Artist’s Way Every Day she wrote: “One of the difficulties with the creative life is that when we have creative breakthroughs, they may look and even be experienced as breakdowns.” SO. MUCH. TRUTH. Because when you create, you breakdown what was there before. It’s like you’re tilting the world, turning it upside down and shaking it until some sort of spiritual truth falls out. Most of the time something does fall and the creative being in me has to pick it up and show it too you. That’s why I do what I do.
I believe the Spirit pours out stuff all the time for us to pick up and share with those who missed the pouring. I mean, I’m so grateful for men like Matthew, Mark, Luke and John who took the time to write histories most terrifyingly beautiful moments. I’m thankful for those who craft songs or paint pictures or tell stories all across the globe that lead me to worship Jesus. Moments like that have brought me to where I am today. Still creative and crazy, but that’s a good thing.
Friend, if you find yourself in one of the moments (which may be different for you than they are for me) chase them. Seriously. And don’t stop until you have a breakdown. Because we need breakdowns for breakthroughs.
And another thing. Stop throwing yourself away. I know that can be hard when this world though wonderful, is confusing and sometimes painful. One day you’re well, the next you’re in a hospital bed. One day you’re a family, the next you’re a divorce statistic. One day you’re a kid in a happy home, the next you’re in foster care. One day you have a job, the next you’re at the unemployment office. One day you’re planning a wedding, the next you’re not. One day you’re lonely and the next you’re lonely again. But even when you find yourself in the harder days, press on. Don’t be too quick to throw yourself away. Take the world and shake it upside down. Seek to find the moments when the Spirit pours out and God scoops you right up and says, “Kid, I’m breaking through.”
Because He is.
Also, I think we should look up at the stars more often.