On Monday, January 2nd, 2017, I had a waking dream in which I found myself working on an article entitled: “7 Ways to Cultivate Your Creativity.” The night before this happened, I’d gone to bed in my children’s room, after their prompting (rolls eyes + smiles), so I didn’t have my handy-dandy dream journal alongside me and could only rely on my memory to retain this information until I made my way back to my bedroom. John Paul Jackson taught that our dreams are written in disappearing ink, so you should always keep something handy to immediately record whatever you remember about them!
There, in the stillness of the morning, I sat and said, Lord, I have the title, but can I have the work? *smiles* He responded by giving me the following seven tips in descending order, which I believe was completely intentional… So in the same manner that God gave it to me, I give it to you.
7 Ways to Cultivate Your Creativity
NUMBER SEVEN. Be Inspired by Others, Don’t Steal Their Work. I find inspiration in so many things, including statements, books, works of art, music, people, places, etc. While it’s good to be inspired, recognize there is a huge difference between using these things as an artistic launching pad for your own creativity and savagely stealing someone’s intellectual property. If your work is similar to that of someone else as a result of the inspiration, it doesn’t hurt your brand [your image, your name, your reputation] to reference them, but it does look bad if you are found to be a plagiarizing pirate or a copy cat. If you find you’re not comfortable sharing your inspiration, this may be an indicator that you should work towards producing something a bit more original.
NUMBER SIX. Connect with Creative People. I love connecting with other creatives because I see it as an invitation to join them in their work and that stirs me up! Moreover, I’ve found that these types of associations are a sure way to spark and stir creative energy in all that are involved. If you don’t have a group of creatives you can physically link up with, take advantage of the lack of limitations social media offers and connect with a group there. In one click of a little button, you can access some really amazing people from all over the world!
NUMBER FIVE. Journal About Your Creative Experiences. Keep track of the activities you’ve started, your progress, what you’ve stopped, and what you’ve completed. Also, be sure to add a short memo about the mood of your day and anything significant, positive or negative, that may have taken place. This will help you to discover what inhibits and what motivates your creative flow so that you can identify your own best practices.
NUMBER FOUR. Listen to Music While You Work. As you work, listen to soaking music, soft prophetic worship, instrumentals, etc. to help build an atmosphere conducive to creating. One evening, I sensed an overwhelming urgency to write a message that burned within me, but it was the end of the day and I was mentally drained. Although my brain was fried, the initial impression I’d gotten let me know the work needed to be done that night, so I used Tyler Richardson’s Selah Moment to drive out the frustrations that my soul had encountered that day. By listening to this music, I was able to quickly connect with God and write from my spirit. I could have written without doing this. I can always write because I’m a writer but I’d rather write one word from my spirit than 3000 from my soul.
NUMBER THREE. Develop Your Natural Gifts. Naturally, I have all sorts of creative gifts lodged inside of me, but my natural ability isn’t everything. Neither does my natural talent mean I don’t need any training or instruction; if you’re wise you’ll seek to develop/increase your skillset. Additionally, if you have had training, it doesn’t mean you’ll never need any extra teaching to further perfect your gifts. As quickly as things progress now continued learning is necessary to stay current and relevant. You will find as you perfect your gift, it will allow it to flow easier. Work with wisdom. You don’t want to expend unnecessary energy and vex your innovative flow trying to figure out how to do something when you can avoid this by taking a little time in advance to learn.
NUMBER TWO. Be Who You Were Created to Be. We all operate with a certain level of creativity, but God has specifically designated some people as creatives. For example, in scripture God directed Moses to enlist two men, Bezalel and Oholiab, to help bring God’s vision into existence (1). They were specifically chosen by God because they were “skilled craftsmen” aka creatives. If you aren’t able to fashion and craft your vision yourself, please hire a creative or even better ask God to direct you to one that has been specifically skilled and appointed by Him.
NUMBER ONE. Tap into God’s Creativity. All of the previously named points are merely suggestions to help you cultivate your creativity, however this last one and also the most important one will activate you. Connecting with your Creator is the number one key to not only increasing your inventive nature but also to rouse the creative wit inside of you. Tap into God’s power, who is the Creator of creativity, by spending time with Him daily. His creative abilities could never be exhausted, they are original, and they are free! When you ask, He will gladly share Himself with you.
PRAYER FOR CREATIVE ACTIVATION
Father, I thank You for being the God of Creativity. I thank You for sending Jesus Christ to pay the price so that everyone that believes in Him can have intimate access to You. I thank You for the Holy Spirit, who is the greatest asset we currently have here in the earth! I thank You that He has all knowledge, ability, and creativity as He is an extension of You!
Father, You commanded Moses to hire those with artistic gifts and special skills to build Your designs. In that same text, You said You’d “given special skill to all the gifted craftsmen so they can make all the things” that You had commanded (Exodus 31:6, NLT). Lord, we need Your special skill, we need Your creativity, we need Your ability, so in faith, I ask that You pour Your creativity out on all those that are humbly seeking it and in purity asking for it. I thank You, that You would awaken many from dreams with divine ideas. I thank You, that in the rush of the day You would still their souls to hear Your whispers – your whispers of witty notions and concepts.
I thank You, Father, that You are igniting Your flames in the earth to start fires for You! I pray that You would give them a new sight to see and create that which hasn’t been done! Remove the limitations off their minds and grant them the ability to just believe! I thank You for doing this, not because of who I am, but because of who You are. Allow these skilled believers to build upon the foundation You’ve already established in Christ, firmly grounding and promoting Your kingdom in the earth!!!
In Jesus Name, Amen!
 Bezalel and Oholiab were also referred to as Bezaleel and Aholiab in other translations of the scripture. Please see Exodus 31:1-11 for more.