I have always considered myself creative. Whatever I can find to help me figure out what is going on around me from scratch, using talents that I’ve been given and skills I have learned I will do it. When I’m sad, or frightened or frustrated, and most of all…happy you will find me singing songs that I wrote, or remaking the ones I know…capturing beauty with my camera in many ways…writing down the words that want to burst from within my heart…knitting up a storm…creating dance routines that will never be seen (they aren’t that good)…imagining the designs I could sew with a sewing machine…getting lost in stories written by others and creating my own stories. Those are the things that bring me joy, that let me release and feel free, that take me to the purest form that I can be, that I was created to be…without the shackles of fear that seem to have become a part of me.
Today I’m thinking about the creatives in my life who dare to put in the effort and see it work out for their good, like Hector…a very talented young man who I’ve gotten to know over the years…with dreams that don’t seem to fit any boxes of what society expects of him…people like him who sing loudly, capture beautifully, explore wholeheartedly…people who I find myself jealous of because they seem to have found a way to just be
I wonder how God feels when he sees us tied down by fears of other people’s opinions instead of doing what he has created us to do. Don’t get me wrong…healthcare continues to be a passion of mine, wanting to see God heal people, miracles occur, lives changed, God in the center, and me right there being used by him, will continue to fuel me regardless of how much unqualified I might feel or be, but I feel like I have to pick one over the other. I’m filled with fear that if I indulge in my creative side, my dreams will be shattered, as if I am the one who planted those dreams and equipped me from the day I was born. I am so afraid to dream bigger dreams than I can handle. Why am I trying to put myself into a box that I wasn’t created to be in?
I do such a dishonor to my maker when I stifle the life that he has given me. When I silence my laughter to make others more comfortable, when I hide my constant need and desire to sing so that people won’t think I’m
cocky egotistical, when I hide my photography out of fear of how others will judge it and my intentions, when I silence the creative part of me that actually works well with the science loving, analytical parts of me. I fear that when my journey ends (many, many, many years from now by the Grace of God), I will find myself disappointed by all that I could have done, captured, created, released, set free because I was so scared of what would happen when I stepped out of the box. My friend Taylor once told me that I needed to dream way bigger than what I was dreaming, that it was what God wanted, and that he would take care of it all, as long as I trusted him, and somewhere along the way I’ve forgotten about that. The God that I serve is one who gives passion and purpose to his children and wants to see them used, something that I know I’ve failed at lately.
I want to be like the Hector’s of the world who give what they have and are fueled by their passions. I want to know that I am capable of doing so much more than what I have been thinking/praying for/dreaming about. I want to stop feeling so constrained, so boxed in, so frustrated with where I am, so conflicted. I’m glad because I know that realizing this means that I haven’t missed it, that God is working to open my eyes about the steps I should take, about how to have faith like a mustard seed, about how to dream things that are out of this world.
It’s time that I stop putting God in a box that he doesn’t belong in, and I challenge you to look within your lives and see where you have boxed him in. What are you passionate about, what brings you joy, and what have you let yourself believe that you can’t do?