Christian creative Faithful-preneurism is not for the faint-hearted. And it must indeed be of the heart, for only the heart will sustain you through the ups and downs you will face.
If I had to give this episode a title, I would title it expect resistance. It’s like, maybe not as positive as one might want, but it’s certainly true. If you are going to live a creative entrepreneurial life, it is not an easy option. Now, there are many different ways in which we can approach our lives and we can approach our contribution to society, and all of them have value. And our worth is not based on where we stand in the social pecking order and even in entrepreneurial circles, even in this Internet circus that we’re part of, sometimes we can feel a bit like a second grade citizen if we’re not living on the cutting edge of entrepreneurialism. I mean, it’s almost like the word job is a swear word in the entrepreneurial ecosphere. But honestly, God can use us to contribute to others and to serve his purposes in a multitude of different ways. But if you choose the entrepreneurial pathway, if you choose to go down this route, if you choose to throw all in with your creativity, desiring, to see your creativity furnish your life with all of the things that are necessary for your sustenance here on Earth, and also for your contribution and sowing into the lives of others.
And of course, at every level, doing so with eternity in view. I want to warn you wholeheartedly turn back, turn back. No, that’s not true. I don’t want you to turn back. I just want you to be aware of what lies ahead. A bit like Pilgrim’s progress. That little gate that the guy went through, that Pilgrim went through Christian went through at the very beginning of his journey, seemed so innocent. Oh, wow. Just a little gateway into a Meadow. But it wasn’t long before the real nature of his decision became very real and very apparent to him. Now, I don’t want to put you off, but I do want to encourage you. Maybe if you’re at the outset, just come into this knowing that you’re going to face significant challenges and that at times there’s going to be inward resistance in your own mindset and your own heartset. And sometimes friend, there will be outward and overt resistance from other people and from circumstances that you fall or stumble into as a result of your decision and your choice to pursue this creative call. And really the journey that you are on as a Christian.
Okay. And in particular, within the context of what we’re sharing this month, your creative calling and entrepreneurial aspirations is going to demand a great deal more of your heart than maybe you first imagined. And if you’re already way into this journey, if you’ve already taken several steps and you’re on the road, you will know exactly what I mean. Oftentimes, particularly if we’re putting our work out to the world, we are putting our heart on the line a day after day as we seek to bring our best to the table for others to benefit from. And quite honestly, you will not always find the heart with which you give is not always the same grateful, generous heart with which your words or your work, however you are manifesting the greatness within your heart that God has planted there. It’s not always going to be received in the same spirit. A bit like parents though if you knew what parenting was like, honestly, would you ever embark upon it? But a bit like parents? I think entrepreneurs have a drive within them that yearns to be fulfilled and we all know the immense joy at the birth of a child.
I’ve had four kids and every single one of them. Their entrance into the world is something that is burned with intense gratitude and joy on my heart. I can remember their first cry as they came out of Larna’s belly. It was a big deal and something you will never forget and that you would not trade for anything. And I think it’s the same for us to a lesser degree when we birth an idea in birthing, the idea in pursuing this dream, often we have no clue what the cost is actually going to be to realise that dream beyond those first urgent cries. And sometimes I think if we did, we might just choose. I think I’ll just keep this one in the can. I know I’ve been like that sometimes when I’ve come up with an idea, even with the Christian Creative Academy, it’s such a joy, such a delight. But wow, what a journey it has been and what a journey it continues to be as I discover what this baby looks like and what it’s going to take to bring it to the place that I know. This is as I imagined it.
This is as I saw it in my heart and embarking upon it. Whatever your idea may be, whatever you have purpose to do, there’s going to be a building. That idea, when it comes out is sometimes fragile, it’s less defined than it will become, and there is a journey that we take in order to see that happen. You’ll know what I mean? If you are taking this road, and most likely if you’re listening to this, you’ll be nodding your head saying, Absolutely, David, I know exactly what you’re talking about. And if we keep with this picture of bringing things to birth, once the contractions have started, there’s no turning back. I remember well the panic when Larna would say on all of those four occasions my waters have broken, there’s no turning back. Here we go. And I found the same with this creative adventure. There have been numerous times in my decades of writing and developing and recording and putting things out for others to consume, and sometimes criticise numerous times that every atom in me has screamed for a less challenging pathway, one that is not so exposing. Yet despite those inward protestations of discomfort.
I keep pushing, I keep believing, I keep contributing, I keep creating. Why? Because I can do nothing else. It’s who I am. It’s who you are. We’re not in this for the money. We do, of course, want to produce an income from the impact that we have. No question. And it’s not wrong to be unashamed in that as one of the goals of your creative aspiration. But seriously, there are easier ways, let’s face it. So creativity is like a fire that Burns on the inside. It’s like a hot sun blazing in our heart. It is God in us, the Creator Himself calling us to radiate his flame wherever we go. As Jesus said, I am the light of the world. And then he says later, and so are you. Go shine. And despite the challenges, it is the most wonderful course to chart. The high seas of possibility. Call us forward, sometimes wondering every day what worlds were going to discover, not knowing what’s over the horizon, and also very aware that there may be storms that we crash into unawares. But there are no securities that are soft and welcoming enough to rest us free from the thought that there’s something worth seeking over that horizon.
And those kind of adventurous pangs keep us moving forward. Make no mistake, though, resistance will present itself in many ways inwardly, through securities, outwardly, sometimes through embarrassment and criticism, financial challenges, doubts, unrealized desires and hopes that don’t work out. Days of despair peppering the delight of following your dream. We’ve all been there. This is undulating ground. This is not just a skate park. This is not just a golden ocean that we skate across and float our way into the happy, fulfilled life. It’s a mountain range at times and at times, friends, the outright roadblocks seeking to chase you away from your promised land will very evidently turn up. We’ve been looking at Genesis, chapter 26 and verse 15 says, for all the Wells of his father’s servants are digged. In the days of Abraham, his father, the Philistines, had stopped them and filled them with Earth. I mean, seriously, who are these people? Is a well that’s already dug, not worth keeping open so you can draw water from it. But these guys had like one of Abrahams man and filled it with soil, filled it with Earth, stopped it up. They want nothing to do with this anointed calling.
They want to drive him out and discourage him at every step and embarking on a journey simply following the voice of heaven, believing God for the outcomes may in one way be the most secure of all the paths to choose. Indeed, in the big picture and in reality it is. But on the natural side, I’m thinking of our personality, and it’s craving for certainty, our flesh, and how it craves security and comfort. It can be a fearful proposition. And Christian creative, faithful pranurism is not for the fainthearted and it must indeed be of the heart, for only the heart will sustain you through some of the ups and downs that you’ll face. The question being, when disaster strikes, when the Wells you find them filled with Earth, what will you do when you’re not received with open arms? How will you feel when your book is slated and the one star is slapped upon it by some kind of stranger on the planet? How will you feel? How will you respond when your cherished idea or story is buried in a well of obscurity? The pain of obscurity, the pain of bringing something beautiful to market.
And you’re the only one who knows how beautiful it really is. What are your next steps going to be? How are you going to bolster your bruised ego, your battered heart when the dream leads you through the Slough of despondent? As I say, I don’t want to discourage you. In a sense, I hope you’re encouraged because you’ll be able to say, oh, thank you, Jesus. I’m not the only one. These are all very good questions. Pursuing a creative life of entrepreneurship is as much a journey of the heart as of the hand. You know what you create. The hand side of it is one thing, but why you create it is really the ship that’s going to carry the cargo. Why do you want to live a creative life? Why do you feel compelled to contribute to the world in the way that you do? Why is it so important to follow the call and not throw in the towel? I feel compelled, and so try as much as I possibly can in this season of my life to encourage other Christian creatives to step up, to step out and let their voice be heard.
It’s a vocation, not an occupation, and absolutely it occupies a lot of my time and thought. But the busy work is not what drives my heart. There is a deep and a living why that undergirds it all. The thought of ringing out another blog post or recording another podcast does not get me out of bed in the morning. It’s the idea that my words might spark courage in the heart of a fellow believer to bring their best to the world that is worth getting out of bed for. Not just another 300 words, not just another few minutes of recording. It’s the idea of what those words can accomplish in the heart of a fellow human being. To cast off the fears that are common to us all and say yes to your creativity. That’s my desire that I would inspire someone to do exactly that. The possibility that a disappointed heart or struggling Saint seeking to do good in the world will read or listen and draw strength from the fellowship they sense through what I share. And I believe that there are many people here listening. It may even be you who feel that same calling and have that same deep.
Why resonating within your own heart? These are the drivers that help my feet hit the ground and keep my excuses. Why not strictly under those feet? Sure, there may be some Wells that need some work to unstopp the flow, but it’s not going to happen by me or anyone else sitting crying of what might have been. We can look at these Wells and we can think, man, I tried and it didn’t work, or this person slated me, or this person didn’t like me, or this product didn’t sell, or this book was not received or whatever else it may be. What are we going to do? Sit by the well and cry? Just continue to dig a legacy of Saints who have blazed a creative trail before us, cheer us on, and the Wells of worth that have been left behind are waiting to fill us afresh with hope for our future, that all things are possible. We are not on this journey alone. Many have gone before us, and many are walking the highway together with us. In fact, I created the Christian Creative Academy and the key cornerstone of that entire membership and programme is something called The Creator’s Highway.
With this picture in mind that we are not alone. We are part of a called out creative community seeking to bring great value to the world and to glorify God as we do so now it’s our day to dig those old Wells and draw from them, but also dig fresh Wells for future generations to drink from. Every word spoken, every page Typed, every picture painted, every song sung, they all plumb depths that will spring up for others, many of them for years to come. But even if we were speaking of Wells, and it sounds very grand, but honestly, even if it’s just a cup that we hand to a stranger today to refresh their heart, even that will have its reward in heaven. Jesus said in Matthew 1042, Whosoever shall give a drink to one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, Verily, I say to you, he shall in no wise lose his reward. And so this short podcast is my cup of encouragement to you to carry on drink freely. If you are thirsty, be encouraged, my brother. Be encouraged, my sister Jesus first.
Everything else follows.
Thanks for listening to today’s episode. Hopefully it was a blessing to you. If it was do, please consider leaving a rating in a review on whatever platform you are listening on. I also would love to encourage you to cheque out my new book, Faithful Creative. We’ve got a package of resources designed specifically to encourage you in your Christian creative call. You can cheque that email@example.com and if you choose to pick it up, use the Promo Code podcast for 50% off so you’ll get it for half price. Have a great rest of your day and God bless Jesus first everything else follows.