When did you last do something really creative? What activities help you use your imagination? What does creativity mean to you?
I think creativity can sometimes feel a bit exclusive - like you're either a creative person, or you're not. Maybe you can't identify with the artist or the potter getting their hands dirty and creating something from nothing. Maybe you can't crochet to save your life. It might even be that your experiences in 'creative' subjects at school was enough to put you off for life!
But what if the problem is in our definition of creativity? I decided to look it up to see if our perception of creativity matches up to its meaning. It's defined as "the use of imagination or original ideas to create something; inventiveness". As Christians, we believe that we are the creation of our creative, imaginative, inventive God - and we're made in his image so that makes us creative too. All of us.
I asked around the office, how the Phase team and friends show their creative side. For some of us, it's expressed through hobbies like painting and making clothes. For others it's an expression of worship for example through decorating a Bible or Bible art journalling, or even through writing and creating resources for work.
I love Einstein's quote, that "creativity is intelligence having fun". I wonder if we've maybe put too many limitations on what creativity is, and what it can be. We may not all be artists, maybe not even musicians or actors or dancers, but we can all apply our God-given creativity to our everyday life. We can all use our problem solving skills at school or at work, or come up with a new way of doing something. We can all, to a greater or lesser degree, be creative in our homes to make our living spaces reflect who we are - even if that only means having our best loved books or treasured ornaments on display.
Creativity can have huge benefits for our wellbeing, too. Creativity teaches us to solve problems, think differently, not give up. It relieves stress, and gives us pride in what we have created - whether that be a physical object, a new strategy or anything else. It helps us express who we are, who we were created to be.
So, I challenge you to be more creative this week. Whether it becomes part of something you're already doing or whether you set aside time to try something new, we'd love to hear how you get on.