Monday, May 16, 2011

Creativity (part 2)- or our lack there of...

"Jesus answered them, "Healthy people don't need a doctor--sick people do."- Luke 5:31 NLT

That verse right there is what I base a lot of my life on and also my view of Christian creativity on. That is what I base my writing on. That is what I base my opinions of Christian music, literature and all else created by Christians upon. 

 There is a lot of Christian music out there. There are a lot of Christian books out there. There are even Christian movies. I fully understand that we are called to be in the world and not of it and we shouldn't be filling our heads with what the world says is ok, but is so wrong by God's standards. I get that. Really. But I also think we are called to reach the lost.

Jesus didn't come to earth to save believers. He came for the lost. He hung out with liars, cheaters, whores and theives. He hung out with filthy rotten sinners. Jesus hung out with the sick. Not just those physically sick, but those terminally sick spiritually. 

Christian resources are great stuff. I read lots of Christian books and listen to a great deal of Christian music.But I have to say, I don't know a lot of unsaved people, who are living like hell until they get to it, who wake up randomly one day and decide to walk into a Christian book/music store to make purchases.  That may happen once every so often but...not usually. That isn't an effective way of reaching the lost. That is an effective way of protecting Christians from the big bad world. Sometimes so much so that we forget that there are lost people out there literally dying to know what we know.

Again, I do listen to Christian music. I do read Christian authors. But I'm sorry, some of it is...lame.

Yes. I said it. LAME. No worldly person would want to hear or read it, instead of what they already have. I am not going to list any band/books in particular or anything, but some of the stuff out there is unoriginal, so UNCREATIVE that I feel embarrassed to associate myself with it. Pretty much a dumbed down version of the worldly stuff. Knock offs, minus things like swearing or sex, so it can be considered Christian. Lame, lame, lame, lame.

This may get controversial here, but I think sometimes people in the world do a better job of being creative than some Christians do. I've said it before and I'll say it again; I think Christians should be the most exciting, most creative people in the world because we know THE CREATOR as our Father and creativity runs in our spiritual DNA! But honestly, we're not sometimes. There are nonchristians out there who are using a gift given to them by God to glorify themselves instead of their Creator and they are doing a good job of it.

An example I use frequently to illustrate this point is the well known Lady Gaga. God gave her such a creative mind. She is so talented. She is influencing my generation in a huge way.

*and all the holy people gasp.*

Yes. You're reading correctly. The creativity that Lady Gaga uses blows me away. 

I'm not saying I like her and I don't actually listen to her music (once I hear any song more than twice I memorize most of the lyrics. I have to be careful about my input) or call myself a fan. The stuff Gaga sings about is dirty, perverted, pornographic, liberal and all together everything I am against. The way she dresses (or...doesn't...) is also awful and totally inappropriate and beyond. But she is, no doubt, creative. She thinks of stuff no one else does. She preforms in a way that is totally unique. While the way she dresses is not okay at all, she does create most of the stuff herself. And she gets people's attentions.

One of her most popular songs right now is one called Born This Way. The first time I heard it I was really, really confused. And really, really caught off guard. She is so, so, so, so lost and confused. The song is about being whoever you are and making no apologizes. A lot of it has to do with sexual orientation and equal rights, but one part of the song (pre chorus, chorus) goes like this:

There’s nothing wrong with loving who you are
she said, cause He made you perfect, babe
So hold your head up girl and you’ll go far
listen to me when I say

I’m beautiful in my way
’cause God makes no mistakes
I’m on the right track baby
I was born this way

She says God. She acknowledges Him as the Creator. Lady Gaga, like everyone, was in fact created by my God. God gives everyone gifts and talents. She is definitely gifted in creativity in relation to music and preforming. She is just using the gifts in a self-glorifying way. What God created in her to bring him glory, she is using in a negative way to bring herself glory. Which always leads me to thinking "What if Lady Gaga got saved? What amazing stuff could she come up with? She could change the world!"

People sometimes tell me that is a really weird way to think. Lady Gaga is filth, according to them. But my Jesus hung out with people like her. And he LOVED them.

Lady Gaga is gifted. What could have been a huge asset to the Kingdom is instead being used to influence my generation in a negative way. But she is at least using her gift.

In the first post I talked about the creative potential inside of us all, given to us by God, just waiting to be used. Why does it seem that she is more creative than Christians? THAT IS NOT RIGHT! Where are the Christian Gagas? No, I don't mean we need some Christian musicians to get on a stage half naked, to wear a dress made of meat to make a statement, or sing about things that clearly do not please God. I mean where are the people in the church using their God-given creativity to influence my generation? Where are the creative people who are using their talents to change a lost and dying world!? For the good, not the bad!?

We don't need more Christian music or Christian books. We need some radical Christians who will step outside the church and reach the lost! Being in the world and not of it implies we have in the world! That is why I want to write books. Not Christian ones, published by Christians publishing houses and sold to Christian book stores for Christians to buy and read. No, those are the healthy people. I want to write amazingly creative books (that glorify God and do not compromise what I believe!), get 'em published by a secular publisher and have them sold in big name book stores right next to the big name secular authors who are perverting my generation! I wanna reach the sick.

I could list off amazingly creative worldy people all day long. They are out there and they are changing the world. For the bad. What are we, those called to change the world and extend the kingdom of God, doing? Lady Gaga is not more creative than me. Or you. Stephanie Meyer isn't more creative than me either. Because I know where my creativity comes from and I know to whom the glory goes. You should to.

Start thinking big, people. Start thinking bigger than the four walls of our (safe) churches. Start thinking broader. And once you do, think bigger. Think up stuff so big, so wild, so crazy that there is no way you can get it done without God. And then think some more. Because God is able to do more than we can ask, think, or imagine.

You were created to do something. Now get creative in whatever way you do and do it. The world is waiting.

*part 3 of the creativity post is coming on Wednesday. Stay tuned to hear about creativity and church.


Sarah Louise Upjohn said...

Yes. So glad you wrote this.

Julia said...


I couldn't agree more.

Thank you for writing this.

ambonadies said...

Well said Bella. Amen!


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