In our career-driven society, we often think about a child’s hobbies and activities in terms of future goals: the scholarship, the career path, the networking. Of course, you want to best for your child, grandchild, nephew or niece, as well as the children in your community who are near and dear to your heart. But what if we take a step back and see what is really going on when a child creates?
In The Mind of the Maker, Dorothy Sayers points out that when Genesis 1 describes man and woman as being made in the image of God, we have learned nothing more about God than that he is a Creator. We learn many things about what kind of Creator he is. But we don’t learn, for instance, that God is a biped or that he has this or that personality trait. In future stories, we will see many more aspects of God’s character on display. However, up until this point in Scripture, all we see is God speaking something into existence, and then pronouncing it good. Sayers writes, “The characteristic common to God and man is apparently that: the desire and the ability to make things.”
When we create, we are participating in the same Logos, the same Word through whom God made the whole cosmos. There is no creative inspiration or ability outside the Source of all Creativity. So when we create, we are connecting with the same Spirit who hovered over the waters at the beginning of creation. We are expressing how we are made in God’s image and showing the world what it looks like to be what God created us to be.
A child’s creative activities could blossom into a future career in the arts or become a side hobby. But it’s not the future outcome that gives the present creativity meaning or value. The value of creativity for a child – for all of us – is ultimately about connecting to the very mind of God. The next time you create, or watch your child create, take time to see the creativity as a holy thing, as an imitation of our Creator-God.
Director of Children’s Ministries
Author: Robin Harris, Director of Children’s Ministries