Ministry often requires creativity. Fortunately, since we are created in God’s image, I believe we all have the potential to be creative. Sadly, many of the teachers in secular education have adapted classes to stifle much of that natural creativity. This leaves many adults believing they aren’t creative.
Ministry can also stifle creativity, because creativity requires time and energy…both of which are often in short supply. In fact, this last year of intense ministry with virtually no breaks was leaving me feeling a bit stifled creatively. So I was interested when a fellow writer suggested A Technique for Producing Ideas by James Webb Young.
Young was in advertising, a field which requires high levels of constant creativity under pressure. After analyzing what he and other creatives did when they needed fresh ideas, he realized there is definitely a process that works. The problem is many people skip a step or two, diminishing their creativity. He also found that those who go through this process regularly can get to the point where they can seemingly do it in a few seconds, rather than hours, days or weeks.
The book is an easy read and very short. Although it’s supposedly written for people in advertising, it is easy enough to translate the techniques to any field…including ministry. It’s not necessarily earth shattering, but for me, it confirmed the need to not skip some of the steps I have been attempting to skip during this year of intense ministry. I found reading it to be refreshing and motivating. The author isn’t openly Christian in his writing, but if you’re in ministry, you hopefully already are aware how the Holy Spirit can guide and assist your creative efforts. To me this process just makes it easier for you to “hear” the ideas God may be trying to communicate to you.
If you feel like your creativity could use a jump start, this little book may just give you the help you need.