{Creativity Series} Igniting the Spark

{Creativity Series} Igniting the Spark

It was the most unlikely time to write a poem.

Three a.m.

I’d just gotten up to nurse my 9-month-old baby girl, while my toddler girl (just 2 ½) slept nearby. It was a season when I was exhausted, frazzled, and had little to no time for myself.

But, a phrase floated into my head, something a friend had said of baby J: “She’s a peach.”

And, I {who hadn’t finished a poem since I completed college almost ten years earlier} knew it was the seed of a poem.

So, I started writing, scribbling on the notepad in my bedside table. The next day, driving the girls to visit my parents’ farm in Ohio, I completed the poem in my head.

I didn’t write another poem for three years. Then, I was given Nature Girl, for my Caroline.

Two more years passed. I had gotten up early with my new baby boy. My sister was in from out of town, visiting. It was definitely not a good time to write a poem.

But, I had asked my little brown book for poetry. And, sometimes, God likes to show up big, so He gave me Elemental. My first praise poem.

I like to think of those precious few scattered poems, over years, as God-gifts. Though they came with no strings attached, it was almost as if they bore little notes:

  • “See what you and I can do together!”
  • “I made you for this – and so much more.”
  • “If I can turn water into wine, I can certainly help you fulfill your creative desires.
  • Trust me, and see where I lead you.”

crabapple blooms

***

Our God created us creative.

We were formed in His image, as scripture says, and who could be more creative than God? <—Tweet This!

He, of, neon-pink-and-orange sunsets, of delicate seashell whorls, of drifts of crabapple blossoms, unbearably sweet?

He delights when we write a song or paint or photograph; when we allow ourselves the time and space to cultivate the gifts of creativity He’s expressly given each of us. We are fearfully and wonderfully made, and when we feel that ache to create, it’s God nudging us to become more fully ourselves.  <—Tweet This!  He’s asking us to lean into who He has created us to be.

Yes, He’s created us Moms, Wives, Daughters, Sisters, Friends, Home Managers, Career Women – and all the myriad other roles we fulfill. But, He’s also given us more than jobs and roles– he’s sheltered within us all, a spark.

It’s that little brightness that, once kindled for Him, will ignite into a holy fire, beautiful to behold.

So, I want to assure you, the mom on the other side of this screen, reading:

  • You have that spark within you.
  • You have something bright and creative to share with this world.
  • You can kindle that ache for something more, that longing to create, into a sustainable fire that will enrich your life and the lives of others around you.

crabapple petals

In the coming weeks, I’ll be posting regularly about moms and creativity. I’ll share stories of other creative moms’ ups and downs, challenges and triumphs; I’ll talk about God’s desires for us and what scripture has to say; and I’ll share practical tips and strategies for uncovering or recovering your creativity.

I hope you’ll join me!

Did you enjoy this post? Be sure to enter your email address in the Subscribe box, so you don’t miss any of the Spark Moms creativity series!

This post was gladly shared with Laura’s Playdates with God at The Wellspring and Jen’s Soli Deo Gloria at Finding Heaven Today.



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Comments

  1. Jumping up and down with JOY over this series!!! (well, in my mind I’m jumping, since I’m in Panera.) Oh, it’s so beautiful. The idea, the photos, your stories and description of the beautiful way He awakened the creativity in you! You have said everything that has been on my heart for so long! I want to just type a line of exclamation points!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Phew. I’ll stop now…but oh, seriously, I could go on…so, so, so proud of you for following God’s promptings!!!
    Christine Wright recently posted..A Letter of Encouragement to a Dreamer…My Profile

  2. Oh, Elizabeth. I think you nailed the ache of so many women hearts. We just feel so caught up in the mundane… but really it’s the mundane that spark creativity. The mundane that prepares us. Grows us. Makes us ready to create. And as a girl whose photography business and writing began when her girls were also a mere 9 months old… I can speak truth to how God fans the spark at such odd times.
    Melissa Ann recently posted..A Letter to a God-Sized Dreamer in my LifeMy Profile

    • Melissa: Yes, you. You are the very heart of this. You’re in this very hands-on, physical, emotional stage of young child-rearing, and I see you reaching out for your dream, to take your creative dreams in hands and live them out, and I am so very proud of you, friend!

  3. Beth, you know I love this:) I’m not sure I’ve ever even told you my whole story about God nudging me to leave the farm and be creative. I put some of it out on my etsy shop bio but there is more, BIG, God literally speaking to me more. Love this series you are doing and thinking about how many people you will inspire:) What a path you are on:):)
    Beth recently posted..Little Girls Skirt print of children playing, with pocket 6-12 mo,12-18 mo,2T,3T,4T,5T by GraceInAbundanceMy Profile

  4. I will join you! 🙂 This sounds amazing. I heart creativity.
    Mandy recently posted..The Poster ProjectMy Profile

  5. Do you know how awesome this is/you are? Do you realize how very proud your sisters are of you? On behalf of every wannabe dreamer, poet, dancer, filmmaker, world-changer whose life you’ll touch in this series, sister girl, I salute you. So, so proud!
    Peace and good, creative daughter of The One.
    Chelle recently posted..My rechargers…I am encouraging youMy Profile

    • Ah, my sweet Chelle, thank you! I really do fervently believe — now more than ever — that we all have creativity within us. It’s God’s design and His desire that we pursue it. Yes, it’s a challenge, no matter what season we are in, as moms and wives (and all those other roles we fulfill), but it’s so worth it. Love that I’m sharing this path with you, creative and bold dreamer that you are!
      seasonswithsoul recently posted..{Creativity Series} Igniting the SparkMy Profile

  6. I love how God surprised you with this gift…just one step at a time. So now you are a poet. Yes, a poet! I’m looking forward to this series. Blessings sister dreamer.
    Elise Daly Parker recently posted..I Got a Letter from God…My Profile

  7. I love the image of the poems and the apple blossoms drifting your way, and the thought that all of us can gather up those God-inspired moments and gain momentum in our own creative life. Following along with you. 🙂

  8. This is a great idea!! We each have our own ways of being creative, and I think it’s when we feel the most alive when we are using those gifts. Can’t wait to read more!
    Alecia recently posted..I Doubt TooMy Profile

  9. I’m all for being creative! I recently blogged about this same thing and it really got some of my readers thinking. Thanks for sharing your take on the need and call to be creative.
    Debi @ DebiStangeland.com recently posted..Using Your Blog To Sharpen Your Readers (and social media too!)My Profile

  10. This is so wonderful, Elizabeth. What a lovely way to awaken the God-seed inside of us! Your words do kindle that spark, friend. Thank you.
    Laura recently posted..Good Prose: Being Edited and EditingMy Profile

  11. Howdy! I could have sworn I’ve been to this blog before but after
    gling through many of the posts I realized it’s new to me.

    Anyhow, I’m certainly happy I discovered it and I’ll be bookmarking it and checking back regularly!
    seasonswithsoul.com – Creativity Series Igniting the Spark recently posted..seasonswithsoul.com – Creativity Series Igniting the SparkMy Profile

Trackbacks

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  3. […] an incredible series on how creativity occurs in the most unlikely point of our lives: motherhood. Spark Mom is the series […]

  4. […] my friend Elizabeth Anne May said she was doing a “Creativity Series,” I thought, “Oh well, I’ll just sit this one out. I’m not creative…” But then I […]

  5. […] May, I launched a blog series exploring the intersection of creativity, spirituality, and motherhood. As part of our journey […]

  6. […] become enchanted with our own beauty and potential, our innate creativity, and the possibilities of living out our creative gifts, hand in hand with […]

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