Creativity is a mystery to me. It seems to flow from a temperamental faucet, sometimes gushing in torrents too broad to embrace fully. So many ideas come — too many at once — and good ideas are lost. Why would God do that? Why would he give me more ideas than I can materialize in four lifetimes? Sometimes the faucet spurts, sometimes it trickles — and in those seasons even just a few skinny droplets on my tongue seem like pure life. Other times nothing comes but rust and iron and I’m tempted to turn to another faucet — discipline — to impose order on the creativity, trying to wrench water from unyielding stone. I can produce things that way, but not beautiful things. They tend to come off utilitarian.
But when the pump is primed, and God is blessing it, and I am responding and jumping into the slick stream it creates, it carries me, energizes me, consumes me. Its far too easy to be used up then, to spend myself so fully that I have nothing left for my children or my wife. I’m in that stream now, enjoying a stronger flow than ever before — and ever more conscious that I need to regularly step out of the stream and let it flow without me. To give myself not to the holy muse but to my sacred family. To draw the line and not cross it for any reason. Until tomorrow when I’m at my desk again. On the other hand, I can’t control when it flows!
It’s seductive, this creativity. Or rather, how I feel when I’m in the flow is seductive. It’s like a drug. It offers a buzz. A deep satisfaction with eyes bigger than its stomach. So I need to close the laptop, clap it shut and shut it down and look my beautiful wife in the eyes and kiss my daughter and clutch my sons for all their worth.
On those days I won’t post anything. And you guys can deal with it.