Create for Lent

When we create we exercise our personhood and express our very nature as the handiwork of the Creator.

Lent is the forty day period leading to Holy Week and Pascha (Easter). Those who take advantage of Lent do certain things that have been done by generations and generations of Lent observers such as fasting from certain foods, praying, doing charitable activities, and participating in corporate worship a little more than usual. Being creative should also be on that list.

God the Creator made people in his image which means a number of different things, one of which is our inclination, our ability, and even our drive to create. While God is able to create something out of nothing, people need raw materials such as words, musical notes, paint, clay, and many other things, which they can gather together and reassemble creatively. What you create depends on who you are, what you’re drawn to, and what resources: talent, inclination, raw materials, you have at hand. For some, being creative is doing a traditional form of art such as writing, painting, sculpting, drawing, composing, performing (song, dance, drama), or one of their many technology-enabled cousins like film, television, photography, videography, and more. For other people being creative is part of their daily work: engineering, architecture, research, teaching, cooking, being an entrepreneur, and too many to list or think of all at once. In a way, all jobs include, to a greater or lesser degree, creating. Still another sort of creativity involves activities you could call hobbies, things like gardening, sewing, knitting, arts and crafts, flower arranging, cooking, home decorating, carpentry, pottery, and, again, many others. These lists are far from complete; they are only a starting point.

Take a specific opportunity, if you observe Lent, maybe then, if not, find a season or day of the week or time of the day to begin or increase your creating. If being creative is part of your daily job, recognize it for what it is and do it vigorously and reverently. Consider taking a class to improve your natural skills for doing whatever it is you do. Commit to a program of increasing your creative acts. Start small: Make it doable. Give yourself small goals (for a writer, write one sentence or brief journal entry per day) and big (write a novel). As you create you do what you were made to do, you enact the nature you were given. You walk in your Creator’s footsteps and as such, open the door to growth and healing. And in fact, the things you create become an offering to God. Creating is a task comparable to prayer, to fasting, to doing acts of charity: it will align you with God and orient you to the rest of creation.

Another thing many do in Lent is confess. Some confess their bad behavior and also their lack of good behavior.  Some confess before a confessor such as a priest, a father or mother figure, a friend, a spouse, while others confess within, in the silence of their own thoughts. To confess that you have not created, not exerted or enacted your birthright, your gift from the Creator, would be a very good start on the way to living the creative life.

About literarylee

I sling words for a living. Always have, always will. Some have been interesting and fun; most not. These days, I write the fun words early in the morning before the adults are up and make me eat my Cream of Wheat.
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