creativity is hard

I have been absent for so long from blogging, I hardly know where to pick it up again.  Not only have I forgotten how to be disciplined and just write, but I have lost the spark, or my brain is empty, or I am not sure what I think at the moment.

For a few months now, I just assumed it was because I was devoting all my brain space to Gurus of Tech, a gathering of technical artists from local churches around the world.  I figured that once it was over, my brain would fill back up with ideas.  It hasn’t, but maybe I also haven’t given it enough time.

Which leads me to the idea that is starting to form in my brain.  I was privileged to interview Blaine Hogan, a very talented creative director at Willow Creek, whom I get to work with each week.  During the interview, we talked about how many tech people think that creatives just sit around and the ideas just happen, usually while drinking a latte at Starbucks and listening to Spotify.  The reality is that starring at a blank page is scary.  Especially when you are out of practice.  And creativity isn’t necessarily automatic.

This isn’t first time that I have wanted to post a blog, but it is the first time I have actually gotten any words to appear.

Creativity is hard.  I also got to interview my senior pastor, Bill Hybels and he talked about how precious an idea is…they don’t just happen, but one idea also has the power to change the world.  It takes discipline to be creative and to get the ideas out.  Plus there are so many ways that an idea can die, or be buried by stuff that doesn’t matter.

Writing this blog and pouring myself into Gurus of Tech have helped me to understand the world that people who have to constantly generate ideas live in.  It has helped me to understand what it feels like when one of your ideas doesn’t go over with an audience.  I understand how difficult it is to transition from one idea to another while standing in front of a room full  of people.  It is not easy to stare at a blank page, knowing that, in 5 minutes you need to come up with something that seems amazing…no pressure.

How can you empathize with your senior pastor this weekend?  Your worship leader?  Your creative director?  Creativity is difficult, and these people need grace and encouragement from us.

photo by: Adam Mulligan