Why Create?

Perhaps I can blame this thought process on Donald Miller’s book A Million Miles in a Thousand Years and watching a decent amount of YouTube videos lately, but I have wondered why do we create? What is it in us that wants to create works of art, music, photography, videography, etc? Why does it sometimes seem that there is this chain reaction when you see something creative and personally engaging that it makes you wish to be a little more creative too?

Something that stimulated my thoughts on this was from the Donald Miller book mentioned above. In one of his chapters he talks about preparing to write novels and says this.

“I’d create my stories while I walked, thinking about what I wanted my characters to do, what I wanted them to say, and how I wanted them to throw headlong into whatever scene was coming next. I felt like God when I walked, always making worlds, and I believed when I arrived at my building and climbed the stairs and went into my office and shut the door, I would sit down and bring these worlds to life. But this never happened.”

Now perhaps for some of us the idea of saying you “felt like God,” could be a bit alarming and cause some evangelical indigestion. I understand where this discomfort comes from and can’t say I’ve often felt like God, or would be brave enough to admit it if I did. Is Donald Miller onto something though? He is writing worlds into existence for his novels creating things, however limited, with his mind and imagination. Doesn’t that sound like a lesser version of the great act of creation God does in the opening chapters of Genesis.

Not to mention when God creates man in Genesis 1:26, he says that man will be created in his image and likeness. While there has been much debate as to what that image and likeness of God means, what if it meant that we have something in us that makes us desire to create just like the God who created all things, including us. Perhaps this is what draws people to creativity, even when they could care less about who God is. It may even be what resonates in us as we watch or hear those who engage in the act of creation and increase our desire to be able to create as well.


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