“A Christian, above all people, should live artistically, aesthetically, and creatively. We are supposed to be representing the Creator who is there, and who we acknowledge to be there…. If we have been created in the image of an Artist, then we should look for expression of artistry, and be sensitive to beauty, responsive to what has been created for our appreciation.” — Edith Schaeffer
My son asked for a recorder for Christmas. Since then, I’ve been teaching him the keys and showing him how to read and play music. I decided to dig out my old flute, long buried in the back of the closet, to show him how it sounds and plays in comparison.
I hadn’t touched those keys in almost a decade.
It came back to me in a heartbeat. The feel of the cool metal in my hands as I slid the three pieces together. The soft clicking sound it made each time I pushed down the keys to play a note. The woosh of air leaving my lungs as I blew out across the hole. Hours of my childhood and adolescence were spent practicing the flute. Private lessons, preparing for competitions, playing for church, it was a huge part of my life.
And then I simply forgot about it. I grew up, became an adult and my life was busy with work and responsibilities. Time for creating something beautiful was a thing of the past. But just like riding a bike, remembering how to create and express myself through music came right back to me.
The truth is, I was made to create. As a person created in the image of God, I reflect Him in many ways, and one is by being able to create things. Whether it’s music, art, stories, building, carving, or any other creative endeavor, we are all creators. We can’t help but describe and express the beauty and wonder of God through such things as paint strokes, written words, and harmonious sounds.
When we were children, it came easier. We could spend hours staring at the sky, drawing puffy clouds and soaring birds with our crayons. We could make up songs and sing at the top of our lungs in the bathtub. We could act out imaginative stories with our toys. It was instinctual and natural.
There is something about being an adult where we push those things aside and focus on other important things like working and raising a family. Perhaps we think creative expression is a hobby for a slower season of life. Maybe we want to create but when we look at how other’s express themselves, we fail in comparison. Or maybe we are just afraid of other’s response to our work.
The truth is, we can’t neglect that side of ourselves. We can’t fail to do what we were made to do. For creating and expressing ourselves in things such as music, art, or writing can bring great glory and honor to our King. Failing to reflect our Maker in this way diminishes the light in this world in the same way it would if the moon failed to reflect the rays of the sun. Ultimately, whether the world rejoices over our creations or not, it’s really a gift, an honor to our King. It’s an outward expression of an inward love for our Creator.
Young children create and express themselves with great joy. They sing at the highest octave. They finger paint masterpieces. They build architectural feats with their blocks. And all of it without fear of man, fear of failure, or fear of wasting time. Let’s become like children again. Whether it’s with paint, with fabric, with icing, with our voice, or with sketches on a page, let’s not fail to reflect our Creator God by creating things of beauty ourselves.