Creative ideas. Words. Stories. They are all around us, but we will not discover them unless we choose to slow down and seek them. We must choose to invite creativity to join us during our day’s journey and then listen for its whispers.
Creative ideas ebb and flow, wax and wane, churn and swirl in the midst of life’s circumstances.
I feel them. I sense them. I long for them. I long to capture them on the page and create the stories I see growing out of the mist of nothingness all around me.
Sometimes, when I have sought out creativity early in the day, I will pass a place, like yellow flowers filling a field to overflowing beside a river or a clear blue sky with a silver airplane set against it like a scene in a movie, and the hint of a story will flutter like flower petals in a quiet moment.
Because they are there, always there. Surrounding me, unfurling before me, even if they elude me at times.
That’s why I take time to slow down and pause in spite of, and often in the midst of, the chaos that consumes many of my days. In intentional moments when I pause, I am able to grasp a few of the story ideas gently and plant them like seeds in my imagination.
Of course, like any gardening project, I realize it is only by nurturing these seeds they will take root, perhaps unfurling into the promise I sense within me.
I plant them with hope, with expectation, and with anticipation. Slowly, words take shape and begin to fall around the ideas, like rain, seeping into the fertile places of my imagination and allowing the ideas to take root, becoming moments in a story.
I sense the connections of these ideas and words, growing together, like vines and branches, intertwining and bringing to life the seeds of characters, actions, snatches of dialog. My anticipation grows because I know these seeds soon will bear the fruit of story.
But it is still too soon. The story tendrils are fragile, vulnerable.
They need more time. To pluck them before they are ready is to loose them from the soil of story, of creativity, uprooting them and causing them to wither and to wilt. If I harvest them too soon, there is risk of their dying, returning to the chaos of this life from where I first discovered them.
And so with care and patience I tend the garden of my words. With anticipation I give them time to take root, letting them sprout and stretch and bend and grow, gaining strength and taking shape and bearing fruit.
I fill my pages with words, with possibility. Some will become the main characters in a new story. Some will inspire new words. And some will simply be pruned away, to make way for better ones.
Meanwhile, the night and sleep beckon me with the promise of quiet darkness, bidding me leave my words for now.
In this quiet the Creator bids me rest and whispers His promise: He will keep my words, like He keeps my soul and my heart, all of me and my creativity under His care. With Him they are safe until the morning dawns.
Until then, I am invited to dream and to wonder, to marvel at this idea of creativity that unfurls within me. I am free to rest and return tomorrow to the dreams and stories the Creator has planted in my heart, in my soul, in my words.
Because that is where my stories soon will grow.