Thursday, 12 June 2008

Our Creative Mandate (Part 5): Cultivating Creation

Creativity is an act of hope.

Creativity carves order and harmony from the chaos. An act of creativity can offer direction where there is uncertainty, illumination where there is darkness or consolation where there is mourning and despair.

To create is to fulfil something of our creation mandate to “fill the earth and subdue it” (Genesis 1:28). Put another way, God’s instruction to Adam and Eve was to cultivate creation and steward it for the Lord. From the word cultivate stems from the same root as the word culture. We are to make culture, bringing growth and blessing as we create.

Not all acts of creativity bring hope. We might say that murder, rape and terrorism: flying a plane into the twin towers are all creative acts yet they do not bring glory to God. Far from cultivation and blessing these acts bring pain and destruction. They stand against God’s desires for His creation.

Not all works of art bring glory to God. Some, by motivation, worship worldly ideals and attitudes rather than honour Christ and his commands.

The freedoms we enjoy as image bearers to God are gilded within a framework of responsibilities. As we create we are to care for the earth, not bring harm.

Today we continue in the legacy of Adam who was the first to cultivate the land. Like Adam, we take hold of that which God has given in creation and in us and we work it. In the groundswell of God’s spirit we pray for the germination of our creativity so that it multiplies, bringing renewal and blessing to the world.

We multiply, enrich, bless, enlarge and grow that which is good whilst restoring, renewing and redeeming that which is broken. We sing, write, dance, skip, paint, sculpt, preach, cook, dig and plant. We cultivate for our King. We make culture for Christ.

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