I recently came upon a post that discussed how creativity could be a burden. How the world is losing originality and needed more genuine and authentic creative ideas and those who needed to use creativity in their profession were having a hard time in exploring new territories. I respect the author of this post as this concerns his work and to an extent, I would also agree that a lot of recycled stuff is filling this world. We get to see a lot of new products, stories or ideas that aren’t really new; they are just the same old stuff in a new package.
However, God has been speaking to me about this one area in my life. I for one never thought of myself ever as a creative person. On the contrary, I pretty much resigned myself to the fact that I lacked creativity and I was all about following proven methods, rules and fitting into a particular shape or a box and could not adjust to anything outside it. This was until I began to truly have a real relationship with God, which I’ve briefly described through some of my experiences in my previous posts. When that happened I saw changes within me that I could never have imagined, honestly. My school and college friends know me as an extreme introvert and I could never imagine (not even in my wildest dreams) going to someone’s house and talking to them about God. Today I am exactly the opposite; I mean I would love to have an opportunity to do so. I love to share God’s love with people because it has transformed me so much. If you would have met me back then and see me now, you would not believe I am who I am today.
Anyway today I want to show you how God revealed to me that I am a new creation and that the old has passed away [2 Corinthians 5:17]. His Spirit has filled me and transformed me. Now does God lack creativity? The obvious answer is no. Look around and see his creation you will see life in so many different forms, beauty in so many different forms, even in all his creations you will find so much variety, I mean I find awesomeness when I look at a person having red hair or blue eyes or dark skin naturally. I see so much beauty in it and thank God for it. So when God who is the source of creativity chooses to dwell in us through his Holy Spirit how can we lack ideas of creativity? In fact, for a person like me I found creativity to be liberating and that’s why I gave the above title to this post. I found that out as I began my new journey of teaching, a little more than 3 years ago. I am not a qualified teacher and as I have shared in my earlier posts, I was an IT professional and was into software project management. However, when God spoke to me, I chose to follow God’s leading and joined as an English & Computer teacher with IID Community College in Chakan, a rural area on the outskirts of Pune. This was a new path for me and I asked God to help me. He gave me ideas to use for my classes that worked brilliantly. All of a sudden, the classes I was taking were packed with students. I experimented a lot and learnt a lot in those initial months. Not everything worked, but it was an experience for me. I held onto ideas that worked and made a note of those that didn’t and tried to see why they didn’t and how I could modify them. God gave me the wisdom to connect with my students, guide, and counsel them. Most of my students were youth while there were a few middle-aged women and younger kids too.
One of my greatest desires was to share God’s love with these students and though we were a Christian NGO, we could not have ‘religion’ as a topic as our organization is a skills training centre. However, we were allowed to have a time of devotions outside of class hours. So I spoke to my students and asked them if they were interested and promptly they agreed to attend. I remember there was no set pattern in conducting these devotions. Many a times I would show them an animated story from the bible, ask them for their thoughts first, and then explain the biblical story. This got them excited and they always looked forward to their time of devotions. I remember that there was only one Christian among all the students so for nearly all of them the stories were new and interesting. I would also try to relate my personal life experiences connected to the story and all in all this was one of the most enjoyed classes both for the students and for me. Here was God using creativity through me, I never dreamt of being able to share the Gospel to these rural people and now I was doing it with fun and excitement. I didn’t have to drag these youth to attend these sessions they wanted to come on their own. Sometime I am just amazed at how God works in and through us.
I was at this NGO for about 8 months and the bonding and affection I received was simply super. One of my colleagues who was a Marathi speaking tailoring instructor (maybe slightly elder to me) came up and said this to me “I have seen how you spoke broken Marathi at the beginning and for the sake of teaching English to your students how you have learnt and picked up more of the language. That inspires me to learn English and I wish to be a student in your class. Please teach me English”. I was speechless, I did not even remember making an effort to improve my Marathi diction and here that was a reason why I had one more student. Sure enough, she joined my class and I began to teach her Basic English. Soon, I was asked to taken on a greater responsibility of managing our branch in the city (currently where I am). I did not get time to let my students know that I would be leaving them and working for our other branch and this happened just a few days before our Christmas break. So on the last day when we had a small celebration where we talked about Jesus, showed them the Jesus movie, and sang songs. Each of my students personally came to speak to me and to wish me. I was moved with their emotional conversations and their precious little gifts. This was too amazing because I had only spent 8 months with them. God taught me that day to never underestimate the power of God and how he can use me as a tool of his creativity. Today I believe the world doesn’t lack creativity, because that is found in the source that is God, the world lacks a deep and intimate relationship with God and needs to see how God is waiting to let his power flow in and through us and reach out to those who need him. Stay Blessed!