Over the past few weeks, my worship team has been reading The HD Leader by Derwin Gray. The book speaks about building multiethnic churches and embracing diversity. According to the book, a homogeneous church is…
Many who are very creative deal with this thing called sensitivity. It means that there sometimes is a thought, experience or encounter that most people easily forget that stays fresh in the mind of a…
There are two types of creativity needed as humans. We have presented issues that need addressing and to be creative in this case mean people work to solve what needs to be solved. After all, necessity is the mother of invention. Things that are “needed” get the resources, the cash, the spotlight. This is true in our spiritual leadership, as well. Culturally, we are locked into a love affair with making things “work” which is not entirely a bad thing. The problem comes when the other leg of creativity is neglected and even denounced. You see, aesthetics are hard to justify as expenditures when your only vision of creativity is one of utility. This modernist thinking clashes with our souls, yet we still in our leadership worship “what works.”
I have some questions for you my friends and readers out there. The reason I have been blogging for so long–almost 9 years now–is the dialog with real people. I have prepared sermons, found places to visit and changed my thinking because of the encounters I have had with you. This topic is for us “creatives” out there.
As a church communications director, I have learned over the years that people respond to stories better than information. As a speaker, I know this is true. In fact, the Bible is almost three-fourths narrative. Jesus used stories as his teaching, almost exclusively. Why is it then that we look at announcements as just announcements? My proposition is that announcements are invitations to join in the larger story of God’s work in our church and the world. Are we thinking too small of our announcements in worship?
Greg Johnson of On Being Human has been busy lately. Besides his band, Greg and his bandmates work on movie and TV soundtracks, produce artists (even people like me), and have been known to cover a video game tune or two. Murrieta, California has few as talented and creative when it comes to the professional music field.
It could be that the idea of creative planning is an oxymoron. After all, does not creativity come from problems to solve? The possibly worst idea, however, is that creativity is simply utility. Task is often coldly machine-like. Creativity, when it is truly firing on all cylinders, is magic.
There are mechanical, technical tasks in creative endeavors–as is true in any endeavor. The difference is that what drives creativity is the substance of dreams. The more dreaming about the possible pervades a team, the freer the flow of envisioning how that dream can become a building, an experience, or a song.
Many spend hours preparing their presentation, their set list of music, or the communication video reel each week only to succumb to the terrible, habitual blank canvass panic. This “blank canvass panic” (or BCP) experience raises your blood pressure and catalyzes the acidic wash inside your stomach. This is the empty page, the blank screen, the note-less and rhythmless song. Likely, you will recover. But, deadlines head toward you like a freight train on a mission.
I have put below ten strategies to help us creatives through the BCP. Better than breathing into a paper bag or bingeing on ice cream are some methods to calm the madness of your creative storm, Some anxiety should be celebrated and leveraged, but the tsunami production output is calling your name.
The power of collaboration has been evident throughout the ages. And I feel like more and more I’m experiencing how dynamic collaboration with kindred creative’s can be. And when you connect at the core with another gifted artist, and God provides the spark…there’s no ceiling.
There is something about singing that defies explanation, but I will try my best. I have been a professional vocalist since I fronted a jazz big band at age 16. In my bow tie and…