New, different and original don’t happen often. In fact, as creatures of habit, we humans all tend to do what we have been doing. There is comfort and security in walking in our own footsteps. A new path or experience often looms as intimidating, threatening and mysterious. Most of our daily actions find us in the groove (rut), identifying us as quite predictable; how fast we drive, what food we eat, what route we take driving to work, where we will sit in a movie theatre or in church, etc.
To do something original — not following our tracks or the tracks of another — takes some serious cognition. Such assertive mental focus is always prefaced by some confusion, uncertainty or perplexity; with the element of unknown present.
It is in this state of mind that books are written, movies filmed, medicine formulated — and religious conversion happens. Always a venture of where we have never been.
Microsoft, Time and Motion Picture Association of America recently collaborated in surveying Americans as to what importance creativity was as a human trait. Although ambition (a determined will to attain a valued goal), humor (a demonstration of intelligence), compassion (a demonstration of love) and intelligence (the ability to acquire and organize truth) were all near the top runners, the survey of Americans identified creativity as the highest rated characteristic a human could possess.
Daily, you and I are bombarded through the advertising media with the terms “new and improved.” In most cases we discover it is neither new nor improved, just “different.” Such a truthful term,“different,” would not however stir up curiosity for a potential buyer.
As someone who has spent his life trying to sell love of God and neighbor, I find myself convinced there is nothing new or different with God; that truth is eternal and never changing.
I see the exciting “new and different” dimension of spirituality in the personal acquaintance and relationship with the loving Creator of us all. One who brings something into existence from no existence.
Our creative think is a sharing in Our Father’s power — as his children, “a chip off the old block.” May we all be creative especially leaving destructive ruts and paths (often crowded boulevards). May we be the endowed and unique individuals that we are — daring to live in the company, power and will of Our Creator.
Our creativity comes from our loving communion with our Creator and our neighbor. Our first and highest trait is love. Love makes creativity happen.
“But the greatest of these is love.”
[I Cor. 13:13]
The Rev. John Burkhart Ph.D, is a retired Episcopal priest and professor of psychology
firstname.lastname@example.org blog at inspirationsandideas