The Discipline of Creativity

On April 18 of this year, I was praying during the night about my work of recording and developing training courses for guitar and worship leading.  I felt God say to me, "bring in the summer harvest."   A very specific metaphor. 
  
A few hours later I read my daily online Bible devotional and came across this passage:  “A child who gathers crops in summer is wise. But a child who sleeps at harvest time brings shame.”  Proverbs 10:5. 
  
God was sending me a clear message.  But I didn’t really know the shape of it until a few months later, when I starting the hard work and discipline of creating.  To make a long story short, I’m recording a collection of Christmas worship songs, including some originals and some re-writes and instrumental versions of classic Christmas hymns. 
  
The initial burst of creative energy is the easy part.  It’s quite another thing to persevere in a day-by-day discipline of secluding myself to create, arrange, write, learn more about my DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) and work with other musicians in remote parts of North America.  If you’re like me, the technical side of recording doesn’t come easily. 
  
Probably the biggest hurdle is refusing to believe, “I could never do that.”  Don’t think that way.  Put in the time and you can learn it.  The digital tools available these days for music creation are amazing and you can get started for very little money invested.  But it will take time. 
  
John Wimber said, “songwriting is 10% inspiration and 90% perspiration.”  Sometimes it really does feel like that.  You have to dig deep and long to find the diamonds.  But it’s worth the sweat! 
  
The harvest is there, but you have to put in a lot of hours to bring it in.  I’ve heard enough stories about farmers to know this is true.  My wife comes from a family of farmers from Missouri.  They worked LONG hours to operate and maintain the farm.  They had a prosperous farm because they worked hard. 
  
I approach my creative tasks like a regular job.  I do it whether or not I feel like doing it.  Whether you have only a few hours per week or several hours per day for creative activity, I encourage you to work hard at it, don’t give up!  Most of the fruit won’t just drop in your lap (though sometimes it will).

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