Are you a creative person?

When asked if they are creative, I think most people would say yes.

You might not consider yourself an arty type that goes to the theatre, strums on a guitar, and takes photographs of sunsets, but I can almost guarantee there’s something you love doing that involves a creative process of some kind. You know… that thing that involves your heart, mind and body? That thing that, when you’re done with it, gives you a feeling of real satisfaction or purpose?

I read this wonderful quote on ‘sensitive, creative types’ in one of my favourite blogs, A Leaf in Springtime:

“The truly creative mind in any field is no more than this: A human creature born abnormally, inhumanely sensitive. To them… a touch is a blow, a sound is a noise, a misfortune is a tragedy, a joy is an ecstasy, a friend is a lover, a lover is a god, and failure is death. Add to this cruelly delicate organism the overpowering necessity to create, create, create — so that without the creating of music or poetry or books or buildings or something of meaning, their very breath is cut off…They must create, must pour out creation. By some strange, unknown, inward urgency they are not really alive unless they are creating.” – Pearl S. Buck

I can relate to this.

Sometimes I feel something even stronger than a desire to create. It’s agony if I don’t, actually.

If I deprive myself of creating in the method I most enjoy I feel hungry, desperate, lost.

But my perfectionistic tendencies often stop me from even beginning the process.


I was listening to a song which led into a short talk by Joel Houston today, and it touched on the topic.

Joel is the writer of many of Hillsong’s worship songs, and he talks about the process of writing Heart Like Heaven. He says (at about the 8 minute mark if you want to watch it here) that sometimes, when writing a song, he feels lost for words. But he goes on to say:

“I’m convinced that there’s not any combination of words in any language that could even begin to articulate even a glimmer of how magnificent, or holy, or glorious God is. How sovereign and in control and how perfect… Yet we try to…

“Sometimes I feel like the very best we can bring, even if it’s the greatest song we could ever write, is broken at the end of the day. It’s not perfect. And the coolest thing in the world is that God’s not looking for a perfect song. He’s not looking for perfect people to sing it. In fact, he goes a step further and says that what he requires is our brokenness. Our weakness…”

When it comes to creating things for the glory of God it isn’t perfection we should be seeking. In our weakness and brokenness, God shines. Not that we shouldn’t try to make something beautiful… But the more we strive for perfection, the more it becomes about us and not God. And that will never work.

Lord, help us to create in your strength. Help us to remember that our gifts are from you, to be used for your purposes. Help us to empty ourselves so that we might be filled, and ultimately give the glory and praise back to you in all we do. Shine through us, Lord.


Be blessed,

Ali x





  1. Dearest Ali! I work part-time at a school these days and for Literature Circle one morning, my group was studying a book of the Middle Ages where the parable of the talents was discussed. It made me think of the talents and gifts that are embedded in us and how it is our duty and obligation to bring them out one by one to use it in some way that makes this world a bit better. And that to hide and bury it under a hole is the worst tragedy of all. It is an insult to the One who first gave it to us. Keep creating. Keep making. Keep bringing all your gifts into the light. Love, Sharon x

    1. I love that. I really, really want to leave a legacy of creativity and beauty. I think it would be a tragedy not to also. Thanks so much Sharon x x

  2. Thank you for encouraging us today. I really loved that we aren’t suppose to go for perfection, because nothing I do ever turns out as good as I want it to! :). God bless you, Ali, and all you create for Him!

    1. Absolutely – we will never be satisfied perhaps, but it’s great to know God will use our small offerings for his glory. Thanks Debbie. May God bless you in your creative endeavors too.

  3. I so relate to your words, Ali. That draw and pull to what God has called us to – that sense that nothing else will quite satisfy. I also get caught up in perfectionist tendencies and often fail to start. God has been reminding me that He only asks for the first step – not the finished journey. Great encouragement to press on for His glory.

  4. I also eagerly read the blog A leaf in Springtime and so I know exactly this passage she quoted, which also deeply touched me. I think I am the same, for years I didn’t do anything with my creativity because I was sure that I was not good enough to call me artistic or creative, but ever since I started to allow the imperfections I have been so creative. Yet as soon as I finish a major project, like a quilt. I find it difficult to get started again because it is like wow, I did that it is the best work I have ever done (because of skills improving) and next time, it has to be better and more perfect. It is totally paralyzing that feeling and need for perfection. Every sunset I see I know that there is a God because it is so gorgeous and beautiful and perfect, but if you look really closely you see that there are even imperfections in his work. So that allows us to to be imperfect. I really enjoyed reading your post Ali!

    1. I love that you have allowed the imperfections and keep going anyway. I can see how it can spiral though. I’ve never thought of it that way: that God’s creation has imperfections also. That’s cool. Creativity doesn’t have to be ‘perfect’ to be good and pleasing, right?

  5. Hi Ali, thanks for following my blog today. This piece on creativity really rings a bell for me, and I have a super sensitive, creative teenager who is currently finding it difficult to ‘fit in’ and find her own niche. I shall show her the lovely quote in your post.
    Thanks and best wishes,

    1. Praying for you, Genevieve, as you navigate the teenage years with your beautiful, creative teenager. Does she have any outlets for her creativity?

      1. Yes Ali, theatre, dancing and singing. Born with a top hat and cane, she is gifted but often you can’t appreciate your own talents until you are much older and wiser.

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