There are two kinds of people in the world: Consumers and Creators.
Sounds like a new kind of species, doesn’t it?
A Consumer is someone who digests for himself what others have made. They consume. Whether it’s food, television, music, art, etc, a Consumer will process and take in to meet his needs.
Sometimes, this can be a good thing. We need to consume some things in order to live- food, sleep, love- those basics are the fundamentals of life.
There are some things that are good to consume- reading. You can never read too much. I would argue that you could never sleep too much. Seems like I’m always needing more sleep.
But on the whole, we consume way too much!
Too much food, too much media, too many materials goods, too much paper, too much plastic…..the list keeps going and going.
While yes, we consume too many materials, I’m more concerned with how much we consume with our minds and hearts.
There is an endless supply of videos, movies, tv shows, and social media feeds. We have constant contact with a bottomless reservoir of never-ending choices for us to consume and digest.
I feel bloated just thinking about it.
We are, however, meant to be a creators.
Each one of us is made in the image of the Creator. God, in His desire to create a being in His image and His likeness, created someone with the abilities to think, imagine, reason, problem solve, and create.
Of course, God created everything out of nothing. We can’t do that.
But, we can use our God-given creativity to produce amazing things!
You might be tempted to think of great artists, singers, and authors as the only ones who are creative, that only a small percentage of people can truly create. Yes, there are some throughout history who were great.
But God has made each one of us in his image, and with the likeness of our Father comes the ability to imagine, wonder, and reason. We can take something and create something else. We can think of an idea and produce it. We can reason through a problem. We can image and wonder, and something beautiful emerges from it.
When we use our God-given abilities to create, we become more like our true selves- the ones that God intended for us to be. When we consume, we become a bloated shadow of our true selves.
I feel such a sense of creativity when I cook supper for my family. I feel such productivity when I organize and plan an event. I feel so inspired when I create music or sing a song. I feel like I’m becoming who God designed me to be when I am making, producing, and creating. I feel I am close to God. He is speaking, whispering to me, and I’m listening and responding back through what I create.
When we are too busy consuming, we can’t hear from God very well. There’s too much noise competing for our attention. All those choices screaming at us to consume, digest, and saturate us. It’s just like in the parable of the sower found in Mark 4:7
“Other seed fell among thorns, and the thorns came up and choked it, and it didn’t produce a crop.”
And then, Jesus explains it to the disciples in verses 18-19:
“Others are sown among thorns; these are the ones who hear the word,19 but the worries of this age, the seduction[f]of wealth, and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.”
When we consume too much of this world, it chokes out the Word in us, and we become unfruitful.
What are you consuming? Yes, eat good food, get good sleep, enjoy a bit of Facebook and your favorite movie or show. But, other than that….how much are your consuming?
What are you creating? What is that thing that makes you happy? Making memories with your children? Photography? Baking? Sewing? Music? Having a conversation with a friend?
Creating doesn’t always mean you have to chisel the David from a large stone or paint the Mona Lisa. Using your God-given abilities to serve your family and others around you brings God and ourselves great delight.
I would love to hear about the creative thoughts and ideas you love to pursue! You can also share about your biggest temptations to consume. What’s your vice or downfall? How can you turn that into something creative or productive?
Leave a comment to share with us! Hey, that’s being creative too!
I’m talking about creating vs consuming here on Facebook!
Also, if you need some help learning to switch gears from being a consumer to a creator, try this devotional, the Summer Gardening series. You’ll learn to tend to your spirit and your relationship with God, then you can be more creative and productive. Sign up here!