From Soul Matters
“Creativity is our ability to dream things up and make them happen.”
— Peggy Taylor
We’re all familiar with that part in the quote about dreaming. Conjuring up new ideas and images is what creativity is all about. Using the building blocks of “what is,” we -almost magically- make the “not yet” appear in our minds.
But what about that other part? The part about “making them happen.” When we talk about creativity, that half of the equation often gets short shrift. We celebrate the fun piece about dreaming and leave off the hard piece of making our imaginings real. And it’s not just the hard part; it’s the scary part too. You have to be brave to try new things and fail. Being creative and unique can cause the crowd to cheer and swoon; it can also lead to being laughed at and excluded from the group. Yes, there is joy, beauty and play in creativity, but there is also insecurity, loneliness and self-doubt. Which means that this month is not just about imagination, artistry and self-expression, but also courage.
At this moment, I have a white board in my office with various colors of post it notes, writing in marker, lines and arrows. I’m working on ideas for a Sunday morning service. I’m thinking of a service that is friendly to children, but with enough spoken word, reflection, sermon and other elements to make worthwhile to adults who enjoy a “regular” service. And it’s not just a creative exercise to decorate my office. It’s going to be real! I’m presenting the service on May 27th. We won’t have Sunday school on that day (except for 7th/8th grade Our Whole Lives). The other children and youth will attend this service. Fittingly enough, the theme is on creativity. I won’t say that I’m not at least a little bit scared. I do have plenty of resources to rely on, though, including advice from my colleagues who have done these types to services. They key, I’m learning, is to tell the message (sermon) in 3 or 4 parts and intersperse it with music or an interactive element. So I hope you’ll make attending this service part of your Memorial Day Weekend. Meaning, community-building, beauty – together, we can make it happen.
in joyful service,
Director of Religious Education