Day 4 — Audaciously Creative

#DETOX is designed to prioritize God in the new year as we allow him to cleanse and renew our souls (Psalm 51:10). Together, we are committing to 21 days of prayer and fasting so that we might come into greater alignment with God’s will, purposes and plans believing and trusting in His power alone to create lasting impact and change in our lives, our church and our world.

Over the course of our #DETOX journey, we will have a daily prayer focus that will help guide and unify us as a community in prayer as we seek God's heart together on a variety of topics. You can find an overview of our daily prayer focus topics here. The following post is meant to serve  as a reminder and inspiration on what and how you might pray on today's prayer focus, but should not limit how God leads you in praying. Be sure to follow along daily at our #DETOX Daily Blog here.

Prayer Focus: Audaciously Creative

In the beginning there was creation - creation on a level so great and awe-inspiring that it gave existence its very meaning. And it is this very action that kicks off everything that we know and believe about our life, purpose, and salvation. So it's no stretch to declare that creation is inextricably tied to our identity in Christ. When we create (whether it's art, words, ideas, numbers, movements), we exercise our God-given ability to do the work of expressing His glory to the audiences in each of our lives. It can be as prominent as a public mural or as practical as a piece of code; anything that serves to display the original beauty of God's creation is an act of worship that works to fulfill the potential outlined for us as His beloved.

Yet there are so many external and internal factors that try to suppress our creativity - here's just a sample:

"I'm just not a creative person"

"Nothing I make is ever good enough"

"It takes too much time/effort/resources”

“There are far more important things to do"

"Nobody cares about the work I create"

"It's so hard to make it as a […], what’s the point of trying?"

Substitute the "I's" with "you's" and you'll get the negative perspective of the world echoing what might already be in your head. It's the age-old story of sin and doubt ruining the good that God intended for His creation, keeping us from discovering our creative fields and stripping us of motivation to pursue them.

I'm certainly guilty of lettings all of these thoughts into my mind to cast doubt on my creative endeavors. At its worst, this negativity throws me into a crippling internal panic that I'm on the wrong track and I should just throw everything out. Previously insignificant thoughts of “your mixes carry no significance” and “you’re a fraud just talking a big game” turn into warped truths, which in turn lead me down a spiral of shame and second-guessing. But what I've come to realize is that these negative thoughts have a common thread - they all pull focus away from the original intent of creation, which is simply to glorify God.

When we realign our creative purpose to express our love for God and to make known His presence in our lives, we are free from the measures of the world and our pessimistic minds. When the goal is to glorify God, we can express our true selves in the gifts God has freely given to us. It doesn't have to be unique. It doesn't have to be perfect. It just needs to be authentically you! Let your creation speak to the distinct "you-ness" that God created you to be - a wonderful work in progress constantly being refined. As Paul writes in 1 Timothy 4:14-15, "Do not neglect the gift you have, which was given you by prophecy when the council of elders laid their hands on you. Practice these things, immerse yourself in them, so that all may see your progress." (ESV)

Together, let's pray for our responses to creativity:

If you feel like you're not creative, pray for inspiration to discover the gifts God has given you.

If you've lost or are struggling to find motivation for creation, pray for a renewal of energy and focus to exercise your gifts for the express purpose of God's glory.

If you’re thriving in your creativity, give thanks to God and inspire those around you to do the same.

Let's pray in thanks for the privilege and blessing to participate in the act of creation through the unique gifts God has instilled in us. For we are all God's beloved, created to bring Him glory.

— David Z.

Royce Yuen