Before my headache started, before my once-within-normal-range emotions dropped through the floorboards, I was creative. I had lots of hobbies and enjoyed spending my time singing, playing guitar, drawing, and crocheting, just to name a few.
After I became unwell, I lost interest in everything that I used to find joy in. I couldn’t bring myself to pick up my guitar or a pencil. I only recently began finding my way back to the things I enjoyed, and I’m beginning to see how important it is to find ways to create and imagine in all circumstances, especially one that’s hurtful.
I began crocheting again after a friend asked me to help her with a Christmas present for her nephew, and after just that little bit of time where I got back into making something special out of something ordinary I was again interested in pursuing ways to be originative.
Now that I’ve taken some time to develop these hobbies into more regular habits again, I wanted to share my new outlook on creativity and why it’s so important.
First of all, I’ll get the annoying (because it’s mentioned so often and many times is expressed condescendingly) point out of the way. Technology is nearly inescapable. Now, I’m not saying give technology up, all I’m going to say is give other things a chance. Things like the satisfaction of working with your hands, or the pleasure you get from playing or singing a song. I know that in my own life I’m working on replacing a lot of my aimless screentime with the opportunity to invent, imagine, and express myself.
Secondly, it feels better to do than to scroll. How productive do you feel after you’ve wasted 20 minutes, 45 minutes, or an hour scrolling into the abyss of social media? I can assure you that doing something almost always feels better than pointless mindlessness. Granted, there is a place for purposeful mindlessness in my opinion, because I’ve definitely felt that after a long day I just need to rest and let my mind go blank. I think that’s okay when carefully measured. However, I feel careless when I waste time doing nothing when I have the energy and means to do something that is more productive, more expressive, and will bring me more joy!
Lastly, it’s more edifying to create, and innumerable studies attest to the fact that creativity is good for the mind, body, and spirit. As far as the spiritual benefits of creativity go, I’ve found that God says a lot about what role creativity should play in the life of a believer.
The Bible starts with the account of Creation where God created something out of nothing. Since we are made in His image, aren’t we also designed to create? We cannot create from nothing, we are only a broken reflection rather than God Himself, but we can make beautiful, wonderful things from what God has made for us. There are also several verses in the Bible that talk about God gifting His people with different abilities (Exodus 31:1-6; Exodus 35:35) such as art, design in relation to metal, jewelry making, woodworking, engraving, designing, embroidering, weaving, and “all kinds of crafts.”
I think that expressing and cultivating creativity is glorifying to God and beneficial to us, so I encourage you to find what fits your creative style and give all the glory to the original Creator God!