The greatest giants in the creative life? Not the trolls on social media. Not the critics who love to lay a one-star. Not the complainers who want to swipe you down to size.
Nope. The most stubborn giants are the ones you carry in your own backpack.
Please note: this transcript is auto-generated so forgive any (or many) errors 😲 – click the timestamps to play that section directly in the audio.
Welcome to another week. Here w e are on Monday starting the week again. And today I want to talk about facing the Giants in your backpack and found the Goliath is a very stubborn dude. 1 minute he’s in the dust with his head bleeding, you feel as though you’ve got it. You feel as though you’re in control.
You feel as though you’re going to kind of just win the battle and carry the spoils. And then the next thing, Lee, back up again, throwing Spears at your heart. The creative life is really not for the feeble hearted and you’re going to face fears. You’re going to have to climb over yourself more times than you can count and get up and dust yourself down on a regular basis. And I’m not saying this off the back of any disaster.
I’m just talking about what I’ve observed both in my own creative journey and the journeys of other people. It’s a challenging thing to believe in. Your dreams. And the greatest Giants in a creative life are not the trolls on social media and I have had a few of those not the critics who love to lay a one star on your book that you’ve birthed this baby that you put out to the world and someone just sweeps by in a kind of drive by review and drops a one star on their.
And I’ve had many of those too.
It’s not the complainers who want to swipe you down to size and keep you safely in the bounds of what they think acceptable and possible. You know, when you disprove the lies that they have told themselves, oftentimes you’ll find people will attack. Now, the biggest ugliest, most stubborn, stinkiest Giants are often the ones that we carry in our own backpack. Those accumulated, that accumulated baggage that we often carry around with us and that pop their heads out every time we choose to step on the boundaries and believe that we can actually make a difference through our creativity.
You know, these monsters often start as the tiniest little embryo, the tiniest little speck of self doubt, the seeds that are sown and these seeds often seem so innocuous.
You know, they seem so like harmless. And yet they grow up and become the these Giants that keep backing us off from moving, for it might be the seed sown by an ungracious teacher. It might be the scathing comment of a parent or so called friend. It may well be the well meaning warnings of someone who is sincerely and earnestly trying to save you from facing disappointment. After all, if we don’t take a risk, we can’t lose.
Right? The problem is that these seemingly innocuous seeds grow up into the poisonous pictures that frame a failing future. Now we take one step out of line and this highlight reel of shame flashes before our eyes. Why do we continue to allow these beastly thoughts to Lodge in our brain? Why do we carry them from decade to decade, clinging to our back and clipping our wings with their weight.
You know, here are some of the things that I found that these backpack bruisers like to alight upon, particularly if you’re stepping out in the in the online world. You know, how about the fact that you don’t sell many, or if any of the product you created, what are you going to do then how are you going to face down the giant that tells you that your worth is diminished somehow because you took a risk and it didn’t work out the way that you’d hoped. The pitiful number of comments or likes on your social posts doesn’t face that one.
You know, you put yourself out and it’s just crickets on the small audience engaged with your newsletter, the minimal options to whatever offer you put out there. The tiny crowd who turn up to a live virtual event or webinar that you were hoping would go n a hundreds of eager ears.
And is that the number of books or like lack of number that you sell after you publish? And it took all of your guts and courage to press that published button? You know, these are real things for creative people. The song that you put out that no one listens to, the fact that your name is glaringly unknown in certain circles where you feel that you would love to fit Lee, how about and this is kind of the the kind of next layer that these nay saying Giants put on you.
You know, it’s not necessarily the fact that we didn’t sell anything.
It’s the fact that someone else is seemingly selling truckloads of the product that they created or the massive engagement anyone other than you get on their social posts, etc. Etc. Etc. You know, it’s like they carry this lot sided magic mirror. If you remember the fairy tale where the kind of evil witch or whatever the evil Queen looks in the mirror and asks mirror mirror on the wall, who is the most beautiful of them all?
And it shows her an Instagram picture of herself for lad like Photoshop. But this mirror is kind of more even more perverse than that. You show it your beauty and it points out your weaknesses. This miserly mirror tells you that you are never enough and doesn’t want you to take the risk of making your worth known and putting your value out where other people can benefit from it. In a giant love to either highlight how small you are or how big someone else is.
That’s one of his main tactics, one of the Spears that he keeps throwing in, particularly at sensitive creative souls. It’s really an inward battle of the mind to stay faithful to your call and keep creating despite setbacks and challenges you face along the way. Now, Giants want your eyes to be on the growling mountains that stand in your path. But God wants you to focus on his faithfulness and his favour. Paul the Apostle had something to say about this comparison, conundrum in a couple of millennia ago.
Even, you know, it was clearly an issue. It’s a human issue, not just a not just a contemporary one. And he says in 2 Corinthians 10:12, for we dare not compare ourselves with some that commend themselves, but the measuring themselves by themselves and comparing themselves among themselves and not wise. This comparison thing, he says, it’s just not wise. Measuring yourself by yourself or by others is just not wisdom because someone else’s call is not your call, someone else’s audience, someone else.
The difference that you are called to make is not necessarily the difference that someone else is called to make in the world, you won’t be judged by what they have done. You’ll be judged by your obedience to your own call. And he goes on to speak. And obviously this was in the context of his calling, but with your creative calling, I think that there’s a principle here that we can really pick up on. He speaks about staying in your Lane and not been distracted by what everyone else is up to.
He continues to Corinthians 10:13. We, on the other hand, do not be boast beyond our legitimate province and proper limit, but we’ll keep within the limits of our Commission, which God has allotted us as their measuring line and which reaches out and includes even you. Now here, he says, Lee, I understand the boundaries of my call. I understand what I’ve been called to and who I’ve been called to reach, and I’m going to stay in my Lane. I’m not going to go running after this opportunity or that opportunity.
I’m not going to look at someone else and think, oh, I wish I were them, or that should be me, but really become comfortable with who you are, become comfortable with, what God has commissioned you to do. And then again, he continues in verse 15, he says, and talks about how serving your chosen audience consistently and humbly can lead can lead to expansion and enlargement, he says. We do not boast, therefore beyond our proper limit over some other man’s labours. But we have the hope and confident expectation that as your faith continues to grow, our field among you may be great enlarged.
What is your field of favour?
What is your field? A faithful service, who are the people that you can best serve and what is the best way that you can serve them? You know my encouragement to you today, if you take that courageous step to accept your creative Commission is to keep on keeping on and a try. Does that may sound as cliche as it may sound? It is true.
The other option is really not an option at all. There’s no turning back. There’s no scurrying back to the trembling crowd to hide under your light. Under a Bush somewhere you drop the baggage. Be present.
Be alive. Be free. Keep serving. Keep selling. Keep believing God is faithful.
He is your creative partner in this worthy endeavour that you have embarked upon and he your God. Your King. The faithful one. The one who is called and purpose in your purpose for you planned for you and laid out as you are his workmanship. Laid out plans for you to walk in.
He is able. Well. Thanks for listening. Hopefully. It’s been an encouragement to you today.
If you want to connect any further, you can do so through my website. DavidLeeMartin.Com have a great day.