AS WE turn in prayer to God, we become vessels of creative
energy and desire. We long to give expression to the gift we have
received, and, as we do so, the act of creation becomes a prayer in
Artists talk about seeing things in their head, or hearing
songs; they are called to create out of nothing, just as God
created out of nothing. Since prayer connects us to God, creativity
becomes a prayer prac-tice.
Unlike other prayer practices, this practice has no set form;
there are literally infinite ways to "do" creativity, because God
gives us all unique abilities. I will outline here a general
overview of how this practice can work, giving some examples. For
those of you who cannot imagine doing this practice on your own,
the group setting may be valuable.
We start with the realisation that we are already doing the
practice: many activities we label "work" or "chores" or "the
drudgery of life" actually hold potential as creative
So, an essential part of the practice is bringing your awareness
and the skill of noticing into daily life. What are some of the
things that you are already creating - a family, a church, a job
environment, a sports team? If you were to make a list of all the
possible starting-points for creative prayer, it might look
something like this:
• Decorating your house or room
• Getting dressed
• Art in school or other settings
• Your ministry or other job
• Activities in which you and your friends participate
• Writing projects
In all of these undertakings, the "greening power" of God is
present and active. The practice begins as you see that you are
already involved in the creative process. If you are already
conditioned to say "No" to creativity, you must ask God to help you
overcome this obstacle.
After you have made clear your desire to know God in creativity,
the next step in this prayer practice is to start noticing what
creative activities naturally draw your interest. You may be
attracted to the traditional arts, or maybe you love to garden,
sew, or organise social events.
As you open yourself to the all-pervasive reality of the
creative power of God, you begin to see creativity blossoming
everywhere. For example, a woman who is just beginning to take her
faith life more seriously talked to me about writing thank-you
notes to people who had expressed sympathy or been helpful at the
time of her mother's death.
She told me that she had always dreaded this sort of task
before; but, on this occasion, she found herself wanting to take
the time to say something special and particular to each
She found herself imagining the person she was writing to,
remembering what she or he had said to her at the funeral. Then she
would think of a unique message for each individual. As she did
this, she found herself filled with a wonderful sense of joy and
appreciation and love.
In this creative activity, the woman had connected with the
power and presence of God's love, and the experience enriched not
only her, but also those around her.
So, seek out the activities that draw you in. Continue to notice
the obstacles that arise: "This is a waste of time," "I can't
draw," and other such interior self-talk. Ask God to help you
overcome them, and give you the courage to continue your creative
endeavour. Then go on with your activity.
This is the third of four edited extracts from Creating
a Life with God: The call of ancient prayer practices by Daniel
Wolpert (BRF, £7.99 (CT Bookshop £7.20);