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Creating Family Space

Creating Family Space

Joyous shouts.
Brisk wind blowing in the 70-degree air.

Smiles and a pair of spinning wheels attached to a long pair of handlebars. This is the scene on this Wednesday evening, the day prior to my birthday, sitting outside while my son, Matteo enjoys his scooter. It’s the simple beauty of moments like this that I don’t stop and absorb enough.
I spend so much time and energy being a content creator of all kinds. I create podcasts, blogs, websites, films, and songs. But what I feel like God has been calling me to this year is not content creation as much as creating space.

The understanding of creating space has always been something that I’ve struggled with. Because where I see space, it’s something that I just fill up with other things that help me move the ball further down the field. Usually, when I think about creating space, I’m thinking about giving myself margin, allowing space to rest, just like you leave space on the edges of a piece of paper as you’re writing. That is the same thing that God encourages us to do with our lives – create space on the edges and not live everything up to that line.
But even more than that, this year God’s made it clear that I need to create space not just for rest but space for family. Now I have a certain amount of time set aside in my calendar to make sure that I am present with my family. But the truth is, even in those times that I’m present, there’s still so much of my mind that isn’t present. That is off mentally creating, doing the next project in my head, thinking about the next blog, thinking about the next podcast episode.

I was watching something this past week about Deshaun Watson of the Cleveland Browns and the way that he’s been trying to prepare, I think, to start the season. And they said something that I had not thought about. One of the reporters reflected on being impressed about the way Deshaun is taking mental reps with the first team. That means that he’s not out there throwing passes and getting actual practice going, but he’s thinking through the process as they’re doing this whole simulated play.
And that makes me think, while I’m getting time, creating space for my family, how much of that time am I spending taking mental reps for the other things that I know I want to accomplish? While I’m sitting here with my son, even right now, I’m recording this blog. While I sit on the couch and watch a show with my daughter, sometimes I’ll be thinking through the next episode, taking mental reps of what I’ll record next.

I don’t think that I’m alone in this issue, especially amongst fellow Christian creatives. When you marry purpose with creativity, it oftentimes feels like a constant barrage of creative thoughts moving things forward towards that purpose. That’s the chaos that I often recognize in my mind, which is crying out for God to bring order.
And this, I believe, is a part of how God is wanting to bring order in mine and in your mind. Through creating space, not just physically, but mentally.

Are you giving your mind space to rest, space to engage truly and intentionally with those that you care about? Space to focus on your relationship with God? Don’t just go through the motions. Don’t just sit in the room. Don’t just do the thing, but ensure you create mental and physical space to do and be all that God’s called you to be today.

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Are You Resting to Create?

Are You Resting to Create?

Resting is not an option; it is a necessity.

However, when we step back and take a glance at all the terrain we need to cross or all the mountains we need to climb, we can feel like rest is just something that we can’t afford to take advantage of. But the truth is that is a lie that will end up robbing us of so much that God is looking to build in and through our lives. But that’s the secret: while we are creatives, we must remember that we are creatives in Christ, and that GOD IS THE CHIEF CREATIVE who is looking for the right canvas to paint His latest miracles. He’s looking for the right vessel to manifest His next works of art.

The rested ones are the trusted ones. Not because we are stronger because we rested, which we are. Not because we think more clearly because we rested, which we do. Instead, it is simply because we are the surrendered and submitted ones who trusted God enough to lay down the work of our hands as He promised to finish building. We are simply like the little boy in John 6 who was with his family as Jesus preached. He had less than a full meal for his family, but when called upon, gave that meal up, trusting God had something greater.

Here’s the thing… the people gathered, while growing in hunger, were not at all aware that a miracle was happening. They just knew that this mountainside conference suddenly was catered. But the little boy knew. He knew that he was asked to give up his meal to the conference leadership, and then suddenly, not only was he getting it back, but everyone would be fed, and there would be leftovers.

As we decide to lay down the work of our hands, even if for only one day a week, we are leaning into God’s ways of multiplying and creating. If we aren’t okay with God’s math in our creative work, then we aren’t yet Christ-centered as a creative, which is the hope and aim of my efforts now. God has confirmed for me my calling to create for His glory and to lead others to do the same. Creating for His glory also means resting for His glory.

Check out the Bible devotion and hip-hop music production session I did live Sunday afternoon for more on this. Pastor Fury Youtube

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What’s the Secret to Balancing Work, Passion Projects, and Rest?

What’s the Secret to Balancing Work, Passion Projects, and Rest?

As a Christian creative, ensuring I get at least a day of rest is crucial for renewing my mind and spirit. But I also need to take purposeful breaks throughout the day and week to allow my brain to recharge. My day job often demands more creative thought than I’d like, leaving me mentally exhausted when I finally have time to focus on my passion projects.

To navigate this, I’ve started prioritizing my passion-filled creative work earlier in the day when my energy levels are highest. When things go well, I get up early enough to dedicate at least an hour to the work I truly love. Each day feels like a high-stakes poker game, where I’m constantly deciding when to conserve my creative chips and when to go “all in.” It’s a delicate negotiation with my body and mind, evaluating the risks and rewards of expending my limited energy reserves on various projects. I’d rather fold a small creative hand than recklessly go all in on work that doesn’t align with my passions.

This ongoing balancing act has me seeking a career path where I can live with passion and creativity at full tilt. Here’s how I’m finding equilibrium and ensuring that both rest and creative passion have their rightful place in my life:

The Importance of Rest and Rhythms

– Rest rejuvenates the mind, body, and spirit, allowing for sustained creativity and preventing burnout.

– Establishing daily, weekly, and seasonal rhythms ensures regular breaks and creates space for creative renewal.

– Embracing the biblical principle of Sabbath rest provides a sacred time for rejuvenation and spiritual nourishment.

Prioritizing Passion Projects

– Allocating time for creative work in the morning when mental energy is highest and distractions are minimal.

– Recognizing that focused, purposeful bursts of creative work can often be more effective than long, exhausted efforts.

– Protecting this sacred creative time as a non-negotiable priority.

Balancing Day Job and Passion 

– Understanding that each hour is a decision point: when to conserve energy for passion projects and when to risk it on work obligations.

– Seeking a career path that aligns more closely with personal passions to maintain creative energy and fulfillment.

By focusing on mindful rest, establishing purposeful rhythms, and strategically “playing” your creative energy like chips in a poker game, you can achieve a more fulfilling and sustainable balance between your work obligations and your passion projects.

What are some of your strategies for navigating exhaustion and creativity to prevent burnout while staying true to your calling as a creative child of God?

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