Creativity Lifts Our Spirits!

Ingenuity inspires, entertains, and lifts our spirits! I was recently blessed by the creative expressions of my own family in wishing me a "Happy Birthday!" Because of the shelter-in-place initiatives due to the COVID-19 Pandemic, it was not possible for us to have a traditional family gathering to celebrate my 69th birthday this week. I cannot ever remember not having multiple family members present during any birthday celebration over the years.  I had one friend express the obvious in his greeting, "Happy Birthday! At least this is one you will not forget!" My response was predictable, "You got that right!"

Thanks to the imagination of some of our very creative children and grandchildren, I received a very unique birthday greeting on my special day. It came by way of a video collection of well-wishes that were segmented together and attached to a text message. The contributors represented locations far and near including cities named Chatham, Georgetown, Kirkword, Rio Rancho, and Sherman! Some of the sentiments were straightforward and conversational. One family dared to deliver their greeting while all of them jumped on a trampoline. Another involved every family member singing with exuberance their musical contribution singly. The end product was a mixture of serious, silly, and sincere! I loved the creativity behind it all!
Klayton and Karter at work!

These are days when we need an emotional boost for sure! During this season, many are turning to art, drama, music and other expressions of inner creativity to lift not only their own spirits, but the spirits of others. We have a music teacher friend in Omaha that is using her gift of ventriloquism to entertain and instruct her students through virtual class interactions.

We have a couple of grandsons that are mapping out the sidewalk that wraps around their home to color in the geometric spaces with bright colors of chalk. An artistic granddaughter has made, colored and cut out a family picture for the refrigerator. We need art to turn our attention elsewhere, to enable us to express the feelings we have, and generally to lift our spirits. Art and the use of our creative gifts do just that!

I wrote about this subject previously in a post entitled, "Lift Up Your Eyes!" Please check this out at...

The biblical accounts describing the construction of the first Temple during the reign of Solomon speak about a very creative person by the name of Huram-Abi. He is characterized as a gifted craftsman who was "trained to work in gold, silver, bronze, iron, stone, and wood, and in purple, blue, crimson fabrics and fine linen, and to do all sorts of engraving" (2 Chronicles 2:13-14 ESV). Huram made fabulous decorations and rich furnishings of cloth and burnished bronze. When the Temple was dedicated, it stood as a renowned and beautiful place of worship where generations could worship the One True God. Solomon declared: "I have indeed built you an exalted house!" (1 Kings 8:12).

Many who have written about spiritual gifts from studies of Romans 12, Ephesians 4, 1 Corinthians 12, and 1 Peter 4 find that there are some 25 gifts specifically mentioned. These same authors agree that this may only be a representative list of the total service gifts that the Holy Spirit has dispensed throughout the body of Christ. They will add gifts such as music, the arts and craftsmanship to the list. One thing I know, our church buildings wouldn't be as beautiful nor would our worship services be as inspiring without these expressions of creativity!

If you find that your mood may be depressive or flagging in these days, why not turn to the spiritual gifts of music, art, and some "hands on" crafting projects to refocus and lift your inner spirit? Many of us have found the creative arts to be therapeutic and a tremendous source of renewal and strength for our inner being during these difficult days!

Mike Keppler, retired pastor,
active churchman and
doting grandparent.


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