I just finished my third week of my first semester of seminary. Not only did I never think I would write those words at age 23 (let alone ever), I never thought I would be as challenged as I am this early on. Learning to read 1,000 pages of theology a week (sometimes in the middle of the night), remembering assignments to an online course, and coming to terms with my social life taking a back seat, it has been sobering to say the least.
Sadly, what I realized most this week was how prone I am to forget why I’m doing this in the first place. In the midst of feeling exhausted and overwhelmed, I find myself wondering what I’ve gotten myself into and why I’m doing it at all. “I don’t even need a master’s degree!” … “Why did I think this was a good idea?” … “This is keeping me from fully investing in the ministry I want to do in the first place.” Ah, albeit they may be lies, I gave them way too much airtime in my mind this week and I’m still learning how to fight it.
Gratefully, I was brought back to earth by a commentary on Genesis, and though I’m pretty sure I don’t have time to write this, I’m learning that I need to. This week we read, studied, and discussed the story of creation that awakens our souls to the heart of Yahweh when we crack open a bible and start from page one:
“In the beginning, God created…”
How many times have you read these words? How many times have you heard them preached? My guess is many. But how many times have you let it speak to you, and not just to the origin of your ancestors? What we find in the text of Genesis 1 is more than just a record of creation. We find the depth of Yahweh’s heart within it. We find that He didn’t merely make things. He didn’t just create us from nothing, He created us to keep creating. As humans make humans, and the acorn of the oak will make more oaks, so are you to continue the act of creating. Yahweh ordered creation to work in a cycle of continuation, and you were made to be a part of it.
I think of my brother, an incredibly gifted musician whose voice, guitar, and the words that he crafts together create beauty. I remember when Jason told me about the first music documentary he remembers watching as a teenager. He recalled the way he marveled in fascination as he listened to the story of the artist. And watching someone create made him want to do the same.
We were created in the very image of The Creator. We were made to make! We were built to build and designed to design, and I wonder tonight how often we take that seriously. Ya know, I spend a lot of time wishing I were different than I am. Some days the object of my wishing is my outside appearance. Other days it’s my inside abilities. On the worst days, it’s both.
But the days I spend creating? Ah, I wish it I could say it was more than the truth would allow.
When we create, we invite the nature and likeness of Yahweh to infiltrate and sanctify. We invite Him to join in the primary task that He gave us to take what we have and make more. He is One that made something from nothing. He is the One whose Spirit hovered over the waters before there was a moon, or a sea to reflect its glory. And He is the One whose very breath brought you in being. What good is the gift of life if you fail to be a maker, a doer, a designer, a creator?
The One who is made you to be.
I hope you spend a little bit more time creating and relishing in the beauty that doing so brings you closer to the heart of the One who at the very beginning, thought first to create.