So, I’m a creative writer working as a happy servant of the Word of God. And pretty much on a daily basis I have to deal with the trapeze act of balancing creativity and hard (even eternal) fact. Sounds like oil and water. Maybe even flame and kerosene.
I’m not the only one in this predicament. Courtroom lawyers have to present the facts as they are while punctuating them with creative, captivating argument. Journalists report the facts. Good ones do it with a creatively emotional spin that send those facts careening into your awareness.
And let’s face it, the solid fact of your loves, your admirations, your appreciations, your awes of those you love, admire, appreciate and awe call your creative resources to communicate them in new ways.
We all live in the nexus of fact and creativity, I’d say.
But that’s speculation on my part.
I can speak to how I deal with my peculiar situation: I’ve been in the Christian publishing business for a quarter of a century, working mostly at the company my father, Arden Mead, helped to found in 1977. I learned the ropes from him, a master at connecting God’s ancient Word to today’s human heart with a creative bent that was stunning. And later he and I, working and writing together in a rare and wondrous collaborative relationship, were a force to be reckoned with.
And so I’ve learned to live at the corner of Creativity Ave. and Truth St. Oh, it’s not a nice Chicago corner. Or a mathematically plotted Milwaukee triangulation. That’s the thing about the corner I live on. It’s all “catty-whompus” as my mom used to say. And it changes: sometimes acute … sometimes oblique.
What I’m getting at here, in a metaphor that’s obviously squirming out of my grasp, is that God’s Word begs to be approached from different perspectives. It requires us to look at it from many angles—God’s holy angles. The perspective is alive with creativity … the Word remains the same.
Even a cursory glance at Scripture affirms the point. God’s message of faith and love remain unchanged, throughout. But to Adam and Eve they were communicated with the tough love of punishment. To Abraham and Sarah the Word came as a beckoning midnight whisper. For Moses and the slaves God’s faith and love were bellowed with “a mighty hand and an outstretched arm” … with thunder on the mountaintop. The Word came to (and through) David in the melody of ancient hymns.
When time was finally pregnant, God’s Word was delivered in Christ, and communicated in baby’s cry, in Jordan’s splashing waters, in demoniac’s cast-off scream, in wedding wine, in the leap of the paralytic, in the soft sighs of Jairus’ daughter, in the clip-clop of donkey hooves, in the breaking of bread, in the lash a whip, in the pounding of nails, in one final dying breath …
… and in a forever open tomb.
I’d say that’s a pretty creative way to get One’s Message across.
And I’m humbled by the invitation to continue to come at God’s Message from every perspective today’s world and the wily human heart requires. I’m happy to live at the axis’ of all of God’s holy angles.
Today I’m doing it in new ways. At ArdenMeadia.com. The site may not be up when you read this. Still, come visit me there!
So, what are creative ways you’ve approached God’s Word? What are creative ways you’ve communicated your own faith and love—in God and in others?