Sometimes I look on Instagram and see how many followers other artists have, and I wonder how to be that successful. Does that say that I am not as talented as them? Of course not, I’m still growing and learning. Posting an image or thought to get “likes” or more followers is not art; it’s garbage. The process of creating is tainted, spoiled.

No, no, I want to create from a place that reveals me, not from a place that tries to make me more than who I am. I don’t want to have to strive or be pressured to create something that isn’t me, in order to get attention and followers just because I am thoughtfully deep, hip, and artistic. I want to be so sure of myself, so confident in who I am that it flows effortlessly in a way that is stunning, radiant, and captivating.

But what about this¬†problem of worrying. I worry because my future seems dependent on how creative I can be, if my work is good enough or unique enough to be my career. I worry that if I can’t be successful, I won’t be any good for anything else, that I will end up broke and poor, shaming those I love and those I want to be loved by.

If I was made with a unique purpose in mind and creatively in such a way that only I can think and do what no one else can, then why do I fear so much? Why do I hesitate and not seize the day? Instead of going after the adventure and seeking out the untamed lands, I waste away in the cages I build for myself. Why can’t I just be brave and obedient to my design?

“Look at me. Taylor, look up.

Peter jumped out on the waves and pursued Me; he looked down too. Look up.

I made you, why would I let one of my beloved creations, my delight and joy, my son fail and become nothing? 

No, I have put within you treasures and wonders that only you can release. You have the keys to heaven and My heart. All you have to do is look up; look at me; and all will be taken care of; and it will be good.”

There is no pressure. Today is a new day. There is joy to walk in; and fear is only an ant, not worth my attention or time. The more I look up at Jesus, the more I return and grow in thoughts of beauty and purity, the innocence and wonder of a child.

“The Lord is my Shepherd. I shall not want.”

Look up to the Shepherd. His job is to take care of His sheep in a way that they prosper. It isn’t for His own agenda. Everything He does is for the benefit of the sheep. So following the Shepherd leads only to more life, more green pastures and quiet waters. Even in the valleys of death, where fear grows into monsters, I can ignore their roaring because the Shepherd is leading me through the darkness. He knows what He is doing.

I break ties with these false mindsets. Let me create for the sake of creating, the joy it brings, and because I get to uncover more and more of You. Guide my fingers; trickle over my soul with color, words, sounds. Make my heart tender; and keep it tender to You.

Surely the creative ideas, the things of heaven, and His eternal loving-kindness will pursue me all my life; and I will dwell with Him forever, beginning today. I only have to look up.

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